I attended a meeting this past week of the Mukti Network. It was an opportunity to get acquainted with some of the agencies I will be working with while I’m in Nepal. From what I saw so far, I’m really excited. Mukti seems like a completely kick-butt group of folks and I’m excited to learn more about the different agencies and the work they do.
The Mukti Network is a loose collaborative of Kathmandu based, mostly Christian, agencies who work on a variety of issues surrounding anti-human trafficking, peace building, reconciliation, and woman and children’s protection and empowerment. At the meeting were folks from counseling agencies, orphanages, groups that work with disabled children, micro-business enterprises for woman, after-care and step-up homes, churches and a ton of other groups doing great work. The meeting was half Nepali and half bideshis (foreigners). They meet each week to talk about specific collaborations and then they pray, in the awesome, noisy, fun, Nepali style. Out loud and all at once.
They bring up an issue in general and if it seems like something that can be collborated on then they have a little workshop meeting about it. For example the was an update on a past collaboration that was shared while I was there, of an young girl with mental health and development issues, who was found abandoned at a temple. The the after-care facilities that had housed the girl, the counseling agency and disabled children group that had evaluated and assisted each gave a little update on how the child was doing and how the collaboration had gone.
I was most impressed by the cooperation. I was part of an anti-trafficking task force through my work at home and the ‘working togetherness’ of the group was worse than a bunch of pre-schoolers. It was a constant turf battle with everyone duking it out for recognition and devaluing other agencies contributions. Of course there are some differences that makes the comparison not entirely fair but I really liked what I saw. Like I said, Mukti was kick-butt. From my first impressions of my first week there, there is good work being done in Nepal and I’m totally blessed and excited to be a part of it.
I won’t be able to do much beyond attend the weekly meetings till I finish language study but I’m in better shape than poor Dave. He will be out of the medical loop for several months still. I think he is missing medicine a little especially now that he is a board certified physician ***** Applause*****. I am so proud and getting all choked up <sniff> but I guess that means I will have to quit telling people that he isn’t a real doctor. ;-)