This week we celebrated International Women’s Day and this year’s theme #ChooseToChallenge is perfectly encapsulated in Laxmi, whose story we are sharing today.
In Nepalese society, the role of the woman is still seen to be within the household, but Laxmi is challenging this social norm everyday through the work she does supporting other carers and advocating for their rights. Laxmi and her husband are carers for their 24-year-old daughter who has an intellectual disability and needs 24-hour care.
Laxmi has been involved in our project based in the Kathmandu Valley, for three years. Funded by the National Lottery Community Fund and in partnership with SGCP Nepal, the project, ‘Care for Carers: Empowering parents of disabled children in Nepal’, promotes the social, mental, physical, and economic wellbeing of carers of children with Cerebral Palsy and other neurological disorders. The project’s objective is to raise awareness of carers and their rights, and to establish carer-friendly services that can empower this vulnerable community.
Laxmi is a key member of the caring community. She is secretary of the Kirtipur Carers Group and the Sakshyam Carers Coordination Committee and executive member of the Nava Aagaman Carers Association, all groups set up as part of the project, to enable carers to advocate for themselves and fight for the rights they deserve. She does all this alongside working in the accounts department of Tribhuvan University.
Through this project, we have impacted the lives of 391 carers and set up 23 local self-help groups and five cluster-level committees, the ones that Laxmi belongs to among them. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted just how important it is to have these support networks in place, and during these difficult months Laxmi took it upon herself to contact everyone in her carers group to ensure that they were safe and well and to ask if they needed any help or support.
Laxmi truly is an inspiration and a valuable member of the caring community.
“Getting to know the other carers and taking income generating training from SGCP Nepal are notable tasks. I will contribute my 100 percent efforts for the rights of disabled children and the carers like us.” – Laxmi.
Help us to help more carers like Laxmi by donating here – just £10 will set up a self-help group like the one Laxmi belongs to, bringing carers together for mutual support.