Stars Of Hope
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Astrid Beseler from Switzerland, Aarya Tara Pre School is the flagship project of Aarya Tara Association which is established and registered as a non profit organization. The primary objective of the association is to provide the service of quality education to the children based on moral, social, cultural, traditional values for the development of Nepal. We are pleased to announce that in the year 2013, the Foundation Audrey Jacobs and Nuns’ Welfare Foundation of Nepal (NWF) successfully opened the Aarya Tara Pre- School at a temporary site in Mahankal chowk, Boudha 06, Kathmandu, Nepal. This Pre-School is exclusively dedicated to provide services to single mothers who have a very impoverished background, and are from most remote areas of Nepal by taking care of their children while they are busy working to earn for their living. They are really grateful to get such good facilities. More than thirty children are currently enrolled and are adding up rapidly. The children’s age group are from 2 to 6 years.
The school remains open from Monday to Friday and each school day begins with morning prayers after which classes resume from 09:00 am to 3:15 pm. The academic curriculum at Aarya Tara PreS chool includes learning activities such as Practical life, Science, Culture, Mathematic, Sensorial, Language (Tibetan, Nepali and English), Painting, Learning songs, Movement, Blocks, Handy Craft, etc.
The main purpose of Arya Tara Pre-School is to provide a carefully planned, stimulating environment which will help children develop themselves, the foundation habits, attitudes, skills and ideas which are essential for a lifetime of creative thinking and learning.
Its objectives are to provide, learn through play and hands- on activities, developing personal independence, to care for the environment, to help children to develop coordination, assisting each child in building a habit of concentration, help to develop self –esteem, developing habits of initiative and persistence.
Our main goals
Aarogya Foundation was established in 2010 to practice a commitment and “dedication to the service of people in need”, especially for the patients with kidney related problems.
As we all have certain ideas about kidney failure and its major consequences. Her sentiment towards kidney patients rose rigorously after she lost her precious mother to kidney failure in 2006 which could have been avoided if a proper kidney treatment facility had been available in Nepal. Ani Choying Drolma had a dream of developing a center in Nepal where kidney illness could be treated, and untimely death might be avoided, hence with help, support and dedication of many kind hearted individuals, the Aarogya Foundation was established and registered as a non-profit organization. Aarogya Foundation is working really very hard to improve transplant practice and facilities in Nepal. We have already moved forward toward our mission and have also achieved remarkable results but we still have a long way to go. Currently Aarogya Foundation is constantly operating in Pulchowk of Lalitpur, Nepal. Further, our goal is to build a permanent place for our hospital with dedicated and updated transplant facilities.
Objectives of Aarogya Foundation as per MOA
Star of Hope Scholarship program was started from 2016 after the 2015 earthquake which destroyed many lives in Nepal. During earthquake, NWF conducted many relief program in various remote places in Nepal. While our visit to those places, our team came to witness the suffering of many families which largely impacted the daily life of the children and some of the families were living in very pitiful life before the earth quake. Their adversity was added with the devastating earthquake dragging them down to extreme poverty, lack of basic needs (food, shelter, education) and improper government monitoring.
Our Vision and goals
We truly believe education is the most powerful and best possible tool we can offer our future generation to create a better world for every living being.
SOH program was specially initiated to reach out to the children who lost their parents during the earthquake and the kids who have never have gotten the opportunity to attend school due to extreme poverty.
Our goal is to provide an educational opportunity to these kids and provide a platform where they can develop to his or her fullest potential to help them create better future for themselves and for the community.
Since April 2016, Stars of Hope have admitted 116 kids providing sponsorship of USD 1000 per child per year, covering their schooling, stationery, uniform, boarding and transportation expenses for staying in the best boarding school available in their local neighborhood. We have committed to support all these kids to complete their schooling.
The key factors which drive us to continue SOH program are, it has an amazing ability to reach out to the kid anywhere in Nepal and it also lets the child grow in the local communities where they belong to and stays close to their friends and family.
In the near future, we wish to be able to support those potential students to persuade further studies and full fill their dreams through this program. We are very much looking forward to sending more kids to school in the coming years.
With a motto of selfless service followed compassion in her heart she took her first step by providing residential school for 7 nuns and established Arya Tara School (ATS), in 2000 under NWF. ATS is a free boarding school which combines traditional Buddhist studies with modern education for nuns. It has been a home to almost 80 young girls from Nepal, and India. The nuns range in age from 5 to 27 years. Besides a regular activities our curriculum has a combination of modern and traditional Buddhist education like Tibetan Grammar, Buddhist Philosophy, English, Nepali, Mathematics, Social Studies, Science, Computing; Environment Population and health (EPH). In addition to these compulsory subjects, ATS also provides extra curriculum such as Music, Dance and Thangka Painting to reach to their full potential.
The Nuns at Arya Tara School study until 10th grade in the school itself and after completion of schooling, the nuns are supported with the necessary tools and resource to further their studies and fulfill their ambitions. During this transition we stands beside them, offering financial and emotional support where necessary.
On: 11th April 2014
Nepals singing nun Ani Choying Dolma has been appointed UNICEF Nepals first ever National Ambassador amidst a function chaired by President Dr. Ram Baran Yadav in the capital on Friday.
Ani will help UNICEFs clarion call to protect Nepali children and adolescents from violence and create a happy and safe environment as an Ambassador where they can grow up to become functional adult, good parents and responsible citizens later in life.
Through their popularity and celebrity-status, UNICEF ambassador lend their voices to send a loud and clear message that children and their well-being are a priority. said Hanna Singer, UNICEF representative to Nepal.
Ani has demonstrated a genuine commitment to communicating clear message of healing and peace through her music. She is a testament to the power music can have when it is associated with a cause.
On the occasion, Ani promised to use her experience and popularity to bring the issues of children and adolescents to the forefront. Though my songs, I seek to reach all the nooks and crannies of Nepal in an effort to improve the lives of children and adolescents.
Ani was first teamed up with UNICEF in 2013, when she appeared in a video unveiled during the launch of UNICEFs end violence against children initiatives. She is also already a champion for children and womens rights with her efforts in advocating for women and girls education, including a school for nun.
Around 1.6 million children are working as child labours while 5,000 children live on the street, according to UNICEF. Similarly, 11,500 women and children were trafficked or were attempted to be trafficked in the year 2010.
Over 700 people from all walks of life assembled in a large conference room in the United Nations headquarters to celebrate the International Day of Happiness. A U.N. resolution officially proclaimed March 20 as the day to annually recognize the importance of happiness in the lives of people worldwide. Since 2013, events have been organized around the world.
The performance by Ani Choying Drolma closed the International Day of Happiness at the United Nations on a perfect uplifting note after a most exciting, educational and inspirational day, which I thought brought a special spirit to the United Nations. – By http://www.huffingtonpost.com
On: 7th July 2017
7th July 2017 the Atlantic Council awarded “The Freedom Award” to Ani Choying Drolma on 7th July at Warsaw, Poland.
From Atlantic Council: With this Freedom Award, we seek to recognize your extraordinary
Achievements as a humanitarian in defending and advancing the rights of women and children in Nepal. We are inspired by your use of music as a powerful tool for good, bringing to light an important cause that would most likely otherwise be ignored by the global community. The success of your foundations is a testament to your tireless personal efforts to provide opportunities for woman and girls in Nepal to reach t
heir full potential. As the number of lives you have touched through your work continues to increase, your endeavors provide much-needed hope for a future where all women and girls are equipped with the skills necessary to break the cycle of poverty in rural communities. It would be an enormous privilege to hono your life’s work by presenting you with this award.
The Freedom Awards were first awarded in 2009. Each year they are honored with individuals and organizations that contribute to the promotion of freedom in the world. In the past, their winners were: Toomas Hendrik Ilves, former president of Estonia; Malala Yousafzai, Pakistani activist; Hillary Clinton, former US Secretary of State; John McCain, American senator; Vaclav Havel, former president of Czechoslovakia.
This year, Ani Choying was also decorated with one of the very important National presidential award titled “SUPRABAL JANSEWASHREE” and MEDAL on the 27th May for her social service in the society.
Her songs and original music has also appeared on various albums, including “Head Massage” by Soul Flip, BMG company and the “Buddha Bar” compilation by George V Company in France. Ani Choying began recording the melodious Chö songs in 1996, and the first album, Choying Drolma and Steve Tibbetts Chö, was released in 1997. In the spring of 2000 Ani Choying’s second CD was released, Sina Vodjani & Choying Drolma Dancing Dakini. Immediately after this release, Ani Choying began to record her third CD, Choying, in a local Kathmandu studio. Although one hundred copied of this CD were sold in April, Choying’s official release is still in the works. Ani Choying has performed Chö in concert in both the United States, in 1998 and 1999, and in Europe, in 1999. In 2000 she has performed at festivals in both the United States and Europe. Ani Choying recorded her first Nepali CD Moments Of Bliss with local musicians in Kathmandu itself and released her album in 2004. Again in 2004, Ani Choying Drolma released another album with Steve Tibbets- Selwa (meaning “clear” or “awake”) for Six Degrees Records.
Ani Choying began recording the melodious Chö songs in 1996, and the first album, Choying Drolma and Steve Tibbetts Chö, was released in 1997. In the spring of 2000 Ani Choying’s second CD was released, Sina Vodjani & Choying Drolma Dancing Dakini. Immediately after this release, Ani Choying began to record her third CD, Choying, in a local Kathmandu studio. Although one hundred copied of this CD were sold in April, Choying’s official release is still in the works. Ani Choying has performed Chö in concert in both the United States, in 1998 and 1999, and in Europe, in 1999. In 2000 she has performed at festivals in both the United States and Europe. Ani Choying recorded her first Nepali CD Moments Of Bliss with local musicians in Kathmandu itself and released her album in 2004. Again in 2004, Ani Choying Drolma released another album with Steve Tibbets- Selwa (meaning “clear” or “awake”) for Six Degrees Records. In June 2005, she released her second Nepali album titled “Smile” and “Inner Peace” is Ani Choying’s sixth CD and it consists of 4 mantras sung in melody. All of the money raised through Ani Choying’s performances and record sales go directly to the Nuns Welfare Foundation.
Ani Choying Drolma was barely 13 when I first knew her. Irrepressibly bright-eyed and intelligent, she spent as much time as she could
working on her English with Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche’s foreign disciples–the “Injis”–at Nagi Gonpa. We called her “ani chewing gum” affectionately. How did this bright and lively young nun who loved to sing and dance become such a force for good in the world, spreading blessings and joy with her voice and her songs, all the while working tirelessly for the education not only of the nuns at her own Arya Tara School, but also for other poor children?
As Ani herself will tell you again and again it is all due to the great power and blessing of our Tsawe’i lama, our root guru, the late master Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche. I met Rinpoche when I was 28 and he absolutely changed my life; Ani met him when she was 10, and he completely shaped hers. Rinpoche inspired his students to be the best people they could, and to do all in their power to work for the benefit of others.
He did this by accepting us completely, thereby enabling us to accept ourselves, to find our strengths and use them.
My first connection with the Nun’s Welfare Foundation and the Arya Tara School came when both were mere dreams of Ani’s. I say “mere” with some hesitation because Ani’s dreams and goals appear to have a life of their own–but only because of the energy and faith she brings to all of her work. She called me one evening and asked whether she could come over right away because she needed to write a proposal.
It had to be delivered that same night to an American consular officer who was going to present it to
someone the next day. Even now it doesn’t sound possible, but somehow we did it. Ani described to me her dream and I managed to convert it into a plausible project proposal in a couple of hours: her ideas, back then my words. Did I think this dream of hers would get anywhere? Frankly, I didn’t, but I loved Ani Choying and had watched her grow up into a remarkable young woman, and so it never even occurred to me to say no. As it turns out that proposal didn’t make much of an impression, or at least not a big enough one, on whoever it was written for, but as we can now see it was simply the beginning of something much larger than I had ever thought possible. Visiting the school last week for the first time in a couple of years, I was astonished. Not simply at the size and beauty of the buildings, but because of the details: the 50+ nuns of all ages and sizes in their school uniforms of nun’s robes and knitted caps, the clean and orderly classrooms, the well-equipped computer lab and, as a final delightful surprise, the thanka painting school. Ani tells me she is still dreaming–of ani thanka painters, ani khenpos and Anis who return to their home villages to educate the people there, teaching them about hygiene and good health and telling them to send their girls to school.
Ani no longer needs my help with her words; her eloquence and natural intelligence never cease to amaze me. Many years ago, we attended some talks on women’s empowerment at the regional UNICEF office. There were lots of words she didn’t understand, which she wrote down and asked me about later, but she grasped the concepts intuitively, and grasped as well how to give such talks herself. Not long after that she was invited to a conference at Harvard University, and that time Judith Amtzis it was my husband who helped with her presentation. He made her write it herself, ignoring all protestations that she couldn’t, and then helped get the final product ready.
The remarkable thing about Ani Choying is that she is still learning, still striving to do better, to be more, and to expand the range of her work and her experience. Now that the Arya Tara School has been built, complete with fields for growing organic vegetables, she is working on building a kidney hospital, and has dreams for a retreat centre. And we know about Ani’s dreams: she won’t stop until they all come true.