Mr. Uttam Sanjel - A Place of Peace and Knowledge for Underprivileged Children
Due to poverty and insufficient infrastructure throughout the country, many children in Nepal are deprived of education and many have to beg on the streets just to survive. In the 1990s, Mr. Uttam Sanjel began telling stories to these street kids and from this, was inspired to help them receive an education. He sacrificed his dream of becoming a Bollywood star and started building sturdy, earthquake-resistant stuctures with simple, inexpensive, easy to obtain bamboo. He called the schools “Samata Shiksha Niketan” which means “Place of Peace and Knowledge.” In addition to offering education and guidance, these schools also provide food and lodging for destitute children.
In recognition of Mr. Uttam Sanjel’s charitable deeds benefiting the underprivileged kids, Supreme Master Ching Hai conferred on him the Shinning World Compassion Award. On December 3, Golden Year 6 (2009), our Association members travelled to the Bamboo School in Kathmandu, Nepal, and with all the teaching staff and students in attendance for the ceremony, presented Mr. Uttam Sanjel with the beautiful plaque, a US$10,000 contribution and a commendation letter from Supreme Master Ching Hai.
Mr. Sanjel was greatly encouraged by this acknowledgement and expressed his heartfelt gratitude. He later wrote a letter to Master thanking Her for Her love, support and contribution. He also described the current situation of these educational institutions and his vision of their future. “Our school is a home for all helpless children and this has only been possible with God’s helping hand behind us. At the present time, we have eleven schools in eleven districts of Nepal where around 18,000 children are being educated. Our plan is to extend this to building a school in every one of the 75 districts of Nepal. Within 10 years, this will be extended to include colleges. For this to happen, we need to have moral support and goodwill from across the world, and this is why we are so grateful for your contribution.”
We sincerely thank Mr. Uttam Sanjel for his loving example and compassionate efforts of providing education for underprivileged children. With God’s blessing, may his school extension projects soon become a reality, creating a brighter future for all Nepalese children.
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