Your exclusive update from Nepal.

‘A fruitful and challenging field visit’

Our Pensioner Support Teams battle difficult road conditions as they carry out home visits to pensioners in remote hilly areas. Heavy monsoon rain in Nepal has continued to disrupt travel through flooding, landslides and virtually impassable roads. These incredible pictures show our team from the Area Welfare Centre in Tehrathum on their way to visit a widow to deliver financial aid and carry out essential health checks. They received a warm welcome – indeed a fruitful visit!

Meet the team: Dewaraj Rai, Area Welfare Officer

Dewaraj enlisted in 1980 and served in the Royal Gurkha Rifles for 18 years. After retirement he worked in Hong Kong before joining GWT in 2015. He has worked in the offices in Khadbari and Darjeeling, starting his new role in Bhojpur in March 2021.

“I had heard a lot about GWT and I wanted to come back and do something for the Gurkha veterans and the community here in Nepal.”

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What is a typical day like for you?
When I am working at the AWC here, I see veterans coming to submit requests for family details and Records Office queries. I also talk with them and listen about their stories while they were serving. When I’m not in the office, I am mostly deployed in the field with a member of the medical team to deliver pensions and medicines.

What do you enjoy about job?
“It is interesting, my job is mostly field based which I enjoy. Going out to villages, meeting our beneficiaries face to face, delivering our services and also scoping the possibilities of helping the wider community – these are the activities I enjoy most. I enjoy reaching out to the beneficiaries as much as possible.”

Bhojpur is a remote and hilly area with many villages still not accessible by road. To reach some pensioners, Dewaraj and his team have a full day’s trek on foot from the nearest road.

What is the biggest challenge you have faced on a field visit?
“There was a widow who required regular oxygen. We had requested a portable oxygen concentrator … but the problem we faced was delivering the equipment to her house in time due to the COVID restriction. Somehow, we managed to bring the equipment to the centre and deliver it to the widow’s house at night, it was an hour’s trek uphill after vehicle ride. But when our team reached there, we found out that the electrical system at her house had malfunctioned. We then consulted with the family and agreed that she be shifted to her daughter’s house in a village nearby. She is now doing well.”

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Medical Camp in Humla is a great success

We had a very busy medical camp in August at Humla District Hospital, with 633 patients attending for medical treatment, checkups and surgeries.
• 140 hearing aids prescribed
• 22 ear surgeries conducted
• 50 cataract surgery/ eye treatments completed
• 60 patients with disabilities provided with mobility aids or measured for prosthetics.

Humla is one of the most underprivileged districts in Nepal in terms of infrastructure, development, road access, education and health services. Running a medical camp in such a remote location in uncertain monsoon weather was a challenge, pulling together expertise from external specialists and with support from local authorities and volunteers. It was incredibly rewarding to be able to help so many patients, some of whom walked for several days to get to the camp.

“Because it’s so remote and deprived, it is very challenging to conduct a camp in Humla. But although it is difficult, it is also very worthwhile, as the patients coming to the camp have no realistic alternative to receive these life-changing treatments”

Dr Gerda Pohl, Medical Director

Updates from Nepal

We have completed the refurbishment of Yadav Secondary School, supplying 30 new desk/bench sets for classrooms.

Many of our pensioners received their second Covid vaccination, with those that could not walk being taken to their nearest vaccination centre.

Our team hard at work installing a handwash station at Charpone Health post.

GWT plays a crucial role in the Covid-19 intervention programme with a delivery of PPE and medical supplies to Kalika Nagar Hospital.