Canadians making a difference

After a blitz of work at SIRC, and a short mountain flight to view the Himalayas, Karen flew out yesterday and is en route right now for Toronto.  Esha treated us both to a night at the very nice Meribel Resort in Dhulikhel so we were like princesses on Friday night.  I enjoyed and G&T on the balcony … ahhhh!

Karen and I at the Meribel Resort in Dhulikhel

Karen and I at the Meribel Resort in Dhulikhel

While at SIRC, Karen worked on a performance management template to be used by the heads of department and admin staff initially, which will then be cascaded to the remainder of the staff later this year.  Karen also worked on a succession plan by department which was hugely helpful.  And had a ton of fun facilitating a team building session for heads of department in an effort for the various departments to work well together.  This session was a big hit, they had lots of fun and hope Karen will return! Karen did an amazing job at SIRC in such a short period of time – 8 business days and accomplished so much!  Thank you Karen. Meanwhile, Jolene survived her trek to Poon Hill in the Annapurna Region, seeing the elephants in Chitwan, and  is currently catching up on creature comforts in Kuala Lumpar before heading to Vietnam for a month.  I have such pity for her …. not!  She liked the trek so much she is already recruiting for a trek to Annapurna Base Camp next year.  Jai Jolene! On Sunday, en route to Banepa, I stopped off at Child Haven to deliver a donation of readers, crayons, pencils etc from Yvonne Sayson, Investment Counsellor at PHNIC.  Kanya and team were thrilled as can be seen by the photo.  Thank you so much Yvonne, you are as generous as ever!

Kanya and team accepting Yvonne's donation at Child Haven, Arubari in Kathmandu

Kanya and team accepting Yvonne’s donation at Child Haven, Arubari in Kathmandu

About Kate Coffey

After 30 or so years in the investment management industry, 2013 saw me turn my life up-side-down, making my way first to Nepal, then Bangladesh during that first ‘year away’. The year took me on a journey I did not expect, had me fall in love with Nepal and its people, and become inspired at the work of Spinal Injury Rehabilitation Centre (SIRC) located in Bhainsepati - 2 hours east of Kathmandu in the Saanga foothills. Since 2014, I have returned to SIRC numerous times, working closely with the folks there in the aftermath of the 2015 earthquakes. In Bangladesh I marvelled at the strength and resilience of marginalized women who have the courage and audacity to break the rules and make a better life for themselves and their children through microfinance programs with BRAC. 2016-2017 saw me embark on a totally new experience in Sri Lanka, a place I never would have chosen to end up in. It’s the 40C+ heat, big humidity and tropical snakes & animals that scared me! But I ended up love love loving! my time there, working with predominantly Tamil small business owners in remote villages in north and east of the country, trying their best to recover their businesses and the lives of their employees, after decades of a civil war. My time in Sri Lanka made me realize my hard-earned business skills and experience can really be put to good use! The work the BIZ+ team and I did there ended up earning me International Volunteer of the Year Award in December 2017, presented on Capitol Hill, Washington DC no less. I am currently home on Bowen Island, in the west coast of Canada, shoring up my finances before I head off to who knows where, for my next expert volunteer assignment. This blog initially started out as a travelogue of sorts to keep friends and family worldwide updated while I was off on my travels in 2013-2014. Since then it has morphed into a life story of the many places I have lived and worked and of the wonderful people I have met along the way. I hope you enjoy.
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