It does not have to be this way.
The Himalayan Medicine School Programme, in cooperation with the Four Medical Sciences of the Early Tradition School in Kathmandu, Nepal will improve the access of health care for those living in the remote mountainous regions of this country by training local members of the Himalayan community the skills used in traditional Tibetan and Himalayan medicine. These techniques use a comprehensive, holistic approach to healing. Many of these practices are now gaining worldwide interest as relevant and effective treatments.
photos by Khenpo Tenpa Yungdrung
Under the guidance of experienced doctors from this rich medical tradition, the students will first learn how to: 1) develop high-quality herbal remedies and; 2) maintain the tradition’s rigorous purity requirements. Over time, they will also learn how to diagnose and treat patients at the school’s charity clinic.
At present, this school has two degree-bearing programs: a doctor’s degree in traditional Himalayan medicine (9 years) and a traditional Himalayan nursing degree (5 years).
There are 13 students at this school currently studying in very austere conditions. These students work with antiqued measuring equipment and learn in cramped quarters. After classes, students study on their beds because they lack a study area. With your support, our programme will improve these conditions by providing the school with newer measuring equipment and a larger study area. Eventually, the Four Medical Sciences of the Early Tradition School will train and house up to 15-20 students a year.
After completing their degrees, the students –most who come from the remote mountainous regions of Dhorpatan, Dolpo and Mustang, Nepal– will not only have the means to support their families, but also the valuable knowledge to provide healthcare in their isolated communities.
At the Enlightened Vision Association (EVA), we believe the best way to assist these individuals is to have an encompassing, holistic relationship with their community by collectively sponsoring them. Programs that focus solely on assisting individuals can undermine delicate social relationships as well as create unrealistic expectations of progress. Our approach, however, will take steps to build sustainable relationships with community leaders and families in order to minimize any social harm.
In our Himalayan Medicine School Programme, we will provide material support to a traditional Tibetan and Himalayan medicine school in Katmandu in order for it to hire and maintain its qualified staff. We will also support the school’s students as they pursue their degrees in traditional Himalayan medicine, since they would be unable to finish their studies without further support.
By using collective sponsoring, EVA will provide information to sponsors twice a year that describes the children’s curricula, testimonies and photos, along with a detailed description on the project’s evolution.
Regular sponsoring fees and donations allow us to finance these programmes so that we can, together, help preserve the cultural heritage for those living throughout the Himalayan region while expanding their horizons.