A traditional Tilaka (तिलक) welcome to Nepal

1st July 2018

Raleigh Nepal Country Director, Ram, welcomes all in a traditional Nepalese ceremony. Each guest is presented with a ceremonial scarf signifying compassion and honored with a Tilaka (तिलक) for prosperity. Colour plays an important role in Nepali society, and the khada (खादा) or scarf is typically white or ivory, symbolizing the pure heart of the giver. Customarily silk, the khada features the eight auspicious symbols or ashtamangala of Tibetan Buddhism (खतक). Used in cultural traditions to welcome or bid farewell to guests or family relations these yidam are used as teaching tools and often appear together or singly in manuscripts, Himalayan artwork ,and as a decorative motif on temples, relics, buildings and jewelry. The Tilaka, a red vermilion paste is applied with the thumb in a single upward stroke to the guests’ forehead to signify the energy of spiritual enlightenmentand wisdom. The welcome reflects the rich culture and tradition of Nepalese society, which combines both Hindu and Buddhist influences, to bestow luck for the journey ahead. Volunteer managers play a pivotal role in the delivery of Raleigh International Programmes. Not only do they inspire and lead our young volunteers, they are also responsible for the delivery of our Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) activities in Nepal. From diverse backgrounds, preparation is essential. Unique to Raleigh’s active global citizenship methodology, volunteer managers live within the beneficiary community during their initial Expedition orientation and induction. Pairing national and international volunteer managers with Host Families in beneficiary communities enables deeper cultural learning and exchange. Lets meet our courageous teams who will be working with some of the most remote and marginalized communities in the Pokharithok (Gorkha) region of Nepal.

Making an Impact in Ghyalchok

Volunteer managers Shreejana & Kirsten.
Shreejana, a student of environmental science from Nepal, and Kirsten, a countryside ranger from the UK, will be working with the Ghyalchok community to help reduce water scarcity, particularly during the dry season. With a passion for environmental sustainability they make a great volunteer management team.

High in the Hills in the Raithowk Community

Volunteer managers Prakash & James.
Prakash, an experienced community development volunteer from Dhankuta in Nepal joins forces with James, an engineer from Manchester in the UK. Nic, a paramedic from Australia who has previously attempted an Andean Crossing in the Patagonia Region of Argentina, will join them. All share a love of mountaineering and will soon be heading out to our most remote community in Raithowk, in the Sano Darbung district.

Active Global Citizenship in Raniswara

Volunteer managers Ram & Kim.
Kim, an experienced global branding and advertising executive from the UK, joins Ram, a student of conflict, peace and development studies and associate lecturer from Ghodghas, Dhanusha-Janakpur in Nepal. With diverse backgrounds they are looking forward to working and learning together.

A holistic approach to health and hygiene in Sundar Basti

Volunteer managers Shashank &Lily.
Shashank, a student of environmental engineering from Kathmandu, joins Lily, a museum and exhibition curator from the UK, as they prepare for their project in the Sundar Basti community. Focused on enabling positive and sustainable change they are keen to learn about Raleigh’s holistic WASH methodology and the promotion of behavioural change for improved hygiene and health outcomes.

A hopeful future for Uttar Padhera

Volunteer managers Jacqueline & Kanchan.
Jacqueline, from Switzerland has been working in the international banking industry for the last decade. She joins Kanchan, a postgraduate anthropology student from Bardibas in Nepal. Fun loving and adventurous they are enthusiastic about their project work in the Uttar Padhera community.  

Learning together for lasting change in Majhuwa and Duday

Volunteer managers Suman & Rohini.
Holly, an Intensive Care Practitioner from Toronto, Canada, will join Suman, a management consultant from Biratnagar, the industrial capital of Nepal, and Rohini, a postgraduate student from Bhaktapur, in the Kathmandu Valley. They are looking forward to working with the Majhuwa and Duday community to improve water quality and accessibility. Blog post by Communications Officer, Susie Hill. For more information and the latest updates, follow the progress of our programmes in Nepal on Facebook & Instagram.

Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Youth In Civil Society Raleigh Expedition Nepal