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We spent our day at Sathi Sansar, a school in Pokhara that supports children with disabilities. There are a few adults in the older classrooms as well. Luni, the director invited us to spend time observing today to discover ways that we can use our expertise to benefit their program staff and children.

We started the day with an objective of a learning exchange through interaction with both staff and students and to discover ways we can bring the most benefit in our short time there. It is important to observe first to understand what the program is doing with the resources they have. After observation, we met with Luni and proposed that we bring in a task to demonstrate systematic instruction in the high school and older room. We feel that the best benefit we can bring is to provide more assessment tools, show staff the principles of systematic instruction, and teach staff how to be more effective trainers. She thought it was a great, and explained it to staff. We found the supplies we needed and will update more tomorrow after the first sessions.

Luni is also connecting us with people who are working in vocational training programs in Pokhara. We are making many great contacts with people who are trying to create opportunity through employment for people with disabilities in Nepal .

At SGCP, we met a man name Sushil who runs a vocational training program in Kathmandu. His organization is essentially a group supported program in a workshop setting. The products created by their customers are sold in local farmer’s markets and in tourist areas. We spoke about Trillium and what our model looks like by comparison. The takeaway of the meeting to stay in contact and exchange information about training, and strategies in community-based programs and job development. He would like to send pictures and videos of his vocational training programs so that we can discuss regularly. It was cool that Sushil sought us out to start this conversation of how to move people forward in community employment settings. We have to keep in mind that access to funding and education is very different than what we experience day to day. Even with limited funds and resources, there are many dedicated people working tirelessly to create opportunity and to advocate for people with disabilities in there community. With continued communication, we can provide support in person and abroad to support these efforts.

There have already been amazing takeaways from our time at various schools and programs. A major note to add is that we have made many connections that will lead to strong organizational relationships in the future between Trillium and organizations in Nepal. Seeds are being planted, relationships building, and we are looking at ways to make this service trip bigger than just the 3 weeks spent here.

Shortly, I will also attach pictures we missed in previous posts. Wifi has been hit or miss, so it has been challenging to share pictures with each other when posting. Many pictures of assistive tech at SGCP!

More to follow on time at Sathi Sansar! Good night and good morning!