CCF empowers girls to take charge of their futures & celebrates International Day of the Girl! Check out this story!

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Today is significant for Conscious Connections Foundation (CCF) because it celebrates the work we do every day in Nepal! Our mission is to help girls reach their full potential and we know first-hand, the impacts of educating and empowering women.


CCF invests in girls and women through education, healthcare, skills development and training.


Thing is, we discovered a woman’s period can provide a big barrier to getting these resources to them.

To kick this obstacle aside, CCF funds a Menstrual Health Hygiene program that has been growing and gaining great interest in several parts of Nepal. We provide menstrual health training workshops and reusable menstruation kits to our participants—and CCF doesn’t just work in urban and easy-to-access areas.

Carrying 400 reusable menstrual pad kits up the trail toward Sertung, Nepal.

Carrying 400 reusable menstrual pad kits up the trail toward Sertung, Nepal.

In fact, our Nepali partners take our trainings to some of the most difficult and remote areas of Nepal.

This is where Menstrual Hygiene education and reusable kits are needed the most.

Watch over the next few weeks as CCF’s trainings come alive in the villages of Hindung and Neber in northern Dhading district…

  • Many days walk from the nearest road

  • Near the border of Tibet

  • In the shadow of the 24,000 ft peak of Ganesh Himal

We look forward to bringing you some great stories from this experience. Stay tuned!

 

In honor of International Day of the Girl Child help our work continue on.
Your donations make this happen.

 
 

Photos
Top Left: Four women and one gentleman came down from Sertung to pick up and carry the kits for CCF.

Top Right: Pema Tamang, Certified Medical Assistant and Menstrual Hygiene Trainer with women from Sertung carrying CCF reusable kits into Hindung.

CCF Launches New Website!

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When Conscious Connections Foundation was founded, we had no idea that it would end up here. We started small, asking for five dollars a month to help girls go to school. Today, we're still working with those same girls and many more, in both Kathmandu and beyond. The launch of this new website is representation of how far we have come as a community!

In early 2015, CCF board members, Austin Zimmerman and Cameron Conner, created the non-profit’s first website. It required learning the tools of website design with zero experience and distilling over 35 years of history into easily digestible snippets of information. With the invaluable help of Sarah Calvin, the website designer at Ganesh Himal Trading, we struggled through and established a platform that told our story to those patient enough to navigate our less-than-user-friendly layout and dig through thick, though heartfelt, paragraphs of memory.

Now, thanks in very large part to rockstar CCF board member, Colleen Cahill, we are proud to release the CCF Website, version 2.0! Our hope is that this space will give those who are newcomers to our organization a better understanding of who we are, the work we do, and most importantly, WHY we do it. With this new site, we hope to extend another avenue for initiating and strengthening our Conscious Connections.

As always, thank you so much for the love, kindness, generosity you have shown us over the years.

The Power of 5 at work: Meet Reshma!

Reshma Shrestha

An independent spirit, Reshma Shrestha, is a Power of 5 recipient and is in Grade 3 this year. Quiet by nature, she’s a mama’s girl and likes to dance with her best friend, Pemsang. Reshma is a hard worker in school and wants to be a doctor. Fun fact: her favorite fruit is watermelon.

Her mother says, “She is a blessing to us, most of the mothers complain about their children being engaged with gadgets. My daughter loves being on her own and studies. We have to ask her to go out to play. If she is not studying she will sit in her chair and manage the books and that’s all.”

Your generous donations are keeping Reshma and other kids like her in school and thriving. Thank you!

 

CCF's 2018 Annual Report released!

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CCF’s 2018 Annual Report is finished and ready for reading! We’ve had fun putting this together and looking back on how much CCF and our partners in Nepal accomplished in 2018. Please read! We hope you enjoy reading it as much as we enjoyed facilitating the work. Thank you for all of your support.

Sincerely,

The Board of Conscious Connections Foundation

Denise Attwood, Cameron Conner, Austin Zimmerman, Ric Conner, Martha Newell, Kim Maynard, Colleen Cahill and Saskia Peck

Development of a "mini-manual" on menstruation begins

Menstrual Health Training being conducted in Nepalgunj located in south central Nepal near the Indian border.

Menstrual Health Training being conducted in Nepalgunj located in south central Nepal near the Indian border.

The CCF board of Directors recently approved funds for development of an educational supplement to increase understanding and retention of information shared during Menstrual Health leadership trainings.

The goal of the manual is to simplify the menstrual health information so that students from all levels of education and literacy can understand what is being shared and carry that information back to their families and communities. It will serve as a great reference tool for trainees to revisit.

The project will be guided and overseen by CCF’s partner, Kesang Yudron, who serves as our Menstrual Hygiene Management Project Manager.

To date, CCF’s Menstrual Health Program has been growing steadily, having conducted several trainings throughout rural Nepal. It has been exciting to see this program being met with great interest and enthusiasm. The training covers gender inequality, sexual reproduction, myths, taboos and religious beliefs surrounding menstruation and the local laws that support women’s rights.

The manuals should be ready in July. Look for updates coming soon!

CCF Celebrates Menstrual Hygiene Day 2019!

Thanks to our partners in Nepal who are educating girls and women and our donors who make it possible!

CCF’s most recent Menstrual Hygiene training was a 2-day intensive on May 5 – 6 in Sindupalchowk, Nepal. 39 rural women ages 16-65 received training in topics ranging from the menstrual cycle, to menstrual taboos and menopause.

Each participant received a reusable cotton menstrual pad kits made in Nepal by CCF sponsored Mahila pads and another 40 kits were distributed to the local high school!

2019 Joy Attwood College Scholarships have been awarded!

Saru Maharjan

Saru Maharjan

This is so exciting to see these young women heading on to college in Nepal! 

Saru Maharjan is one of the 3 scholars chosen. Here is a bit of her story! 

My father is abroad and works as a migrant worker and my mother looks after our family here. My mother does not show but, she struggles to meet all our needs. She is strict but works very hard for us. I see my mother weaving. Despite liking how she weaves and my interests in it, I feel scared to try it as it might go wrong. 

At present I am studying Hotel Management and my favorite part is to study about the food chain and to know about different animals. My interest is in food and beverage. I love music and to sing. I am a big fan of movies.

From childhood I dreamt to be a play back singer for Nepali movies. But as a carrier plan I chose to study hotel management as my field of interest too.

Though my mother wants me to be safe and come home early, I sometime visit my friends and we love to roam around and have fun. I am so grateful to be selected as one of your recipients because this will directly aid towards financial stability for my studies.

Baseri Clinic Update: CCF Looks to the future

In February of 2019, CCF Board member Kim Maynard traveled to Nepal and visited with the local Deurali Community Committee that oversees the Baseri Clinic (CCF helped build and continues to support). She was able to meet the new staff and the community expressed how much they appreciated the clinic and how it helps the community. She was able to gather great input on where to focus CCF’s future efforts.

Baseri Clinic’s new staff, (at left) Parbati, new clinic nurse, (center) Sita, the admin assistant, and (at right) Anita the new mid-wife.

Baseri Clinic’s new staff, (at left) Parbati, new clinic nurse, (center) Sita, the admin assistant, and (at right) Anita the new mid-wife.

Deurali Community Committee meeting with Baseri Clinic in background.

Deurali Community Committee meeting with Baseri Clinic in background.

The committee shared their hope to be involved in CCF’s Menstrual Hygiene Training programs since more information on women’s issues was vital to the community. They also welcomed the distribution of reusable menstrual pad kits since more than 80% of women in the area still use cloth rags.

The committee expressed a need for Gender Based Violence (GBV) trainings since domestic violence is a real problem in the rural areas.

CCF will engage this community and clinic staff in the upcoming years to bring training and awareness around these issues. We will also continue to maintain the clinic and staffing.

Another tragedy in Nepal. The need for Menstrual Education continues.

More unnecessary deaths in Nepal demonstrate, yet again, why Menstrual Hygiene Education is so important in Nepal and all over the world.

Women should not have to suffer and die for a natural, amazing process. CCF is so grateful to our partners in Nepal for their help in bringing Menstrual Education to communities there so that chaupadi will never need to occur, this is so tragic.

Read the story here: Banished from home for menstruating, mother and two children die in Nepali hut.

CCF’s Menstrual Hygiene Training Program is gaining momentum and growing. Please support giving access to this education for Nepal’s rural women, children and men.

CCF Sponsors 3-day Menstrual Hygiene Leadership Training

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We are so proud of our partners in Nepal! With your support, CCF was able to sponsor a 3-day intensive Menstrual Hygiene Leadership training for 26 women—and one brave man—from rural and urban areas in Nepal. It was held in Kathmandu, Nepal. Our partner Kesang Yudron did an amazing job organizing this training including lining up the respected team at the Radha Paudel Foundation to do the training. Our partners at the Association for Craft Producers graciously donated their meeting space for the event and it was a huge success! Those trained are now excited to organize their own trainings in their villages and CCF will be there to support them.

This workshop covered issues on gender inequality, reproduction, menstrual hygiene, tools and management, taboos and myths related to menstruation in Nepal, religious beliefs and laws that support women's rights. The focus is to enable participants to increase their understanding of these issues so they can disseminate information to women and men in their local communities.

Already CCF has sponsored 3 shorter trainings that are set up for the girls involved in the Power of 5 and their mothers! Thanks to all in Nepal who did the hard work to get this done and to all who came from remote areas to participate! For those who wanted them CCF also provided a reusable menstrual pad kit for them to use and evaluate. We look forward to making them better and better and available with all the future trainings!

Menstrual Hygiene Education in Nepal is spreading!

Education about women’s menstrual health is spreading! Newly trained Nepali leaders, Yogendra, Pema, with the help of program director, Kesang, are taking this very important information out to rural villages. These trainings cover issues including gender inequality, reproduction, menstrual hygiene, menstruation tools and management, taboos and myths related to menstruation in Nepal, as well as religious beliefs concerning menstruation and laws that support women’s rights. In the fall of 2018, they organized two training sessions and were overwhelmed by the interest. The training in Sertung, Nepal, on October 19 had 151 attendees and 90 reusable menstrual kits donated by CCF were distributed. The second training was held on October 22 in Borang, Nepal and drew more than 40 attendees! Conscious Connections Foundation is so grateful to our partners in Nepal for conducting these trainings! The report back is that everyone is very happy to have these trainings and all of this great information. We look forward to doing further trainings in this remote area in the fall of 2019! Thanks Yogendra, Pema and Kesang. None of this is possible without you!