E-NEWSDONATE

Our Work in Action: From Carer to Co-ordinator

When Nisha married her husband as a young woman, she was looking forward to a promising future. She was working for her local government’s health department whilst at the same time completing studies in the medical field. However, just days in to her marriage she discovered that her husband had epilepsy and was alcohol dependent.

 

Nisha was committed to her husband and dedicated herself to helping him recover. Despite her best efforts, over the years her husband’s epilepsy worsened, as did his addiction to alcohol. The couple had two children together yet he would spend most of the family’s income on alcohol and also started to become violent towards Nisha. With two children to look after as well as her husband, Nisha was unable to continue her employment with the local government or her studies.

 

As their situation worsened, Nisha and her family were stigmatised by their local community and became isolated. They had no money and Nisha became increasingly worried for her children’s future. At her lowest point she contemplated suicide but somehow found the strength to continue.

When LEADS Nepal began supporting carers in Myagdi, Nisha received support from a social mobiliser who helped her set up a small grocery shop in order to earn an income to sustain her family. This give Nisha new hope in her life.

 

As well as setting up a shop, the mobiliser encouraged Nisha to join her local self-help group for carers and within just six months she was leading the group. As her confidence grew, she became committed to supporting carers not just in her group but across her district. She trained other carers on making craft items, which they could do alongside their caring duties and sell for profit.

 

When a district level Carers Association and Carers Co-operative were set up through the carers project in Myagdi, Nisha was elected by her peers to be the president of both organisations. During her first year in leadership, she confidently visited government departments to request resources to be available for carers. She also arranged a market to sell organic products manufactured by carers in order to raise funds for the Carers Association. This money was then used to support some of the neediest carers in the district.

 

After seeing her leadership skills, innovative ideas, and vision for carers, LEADS Nepal offered Nisha a role as a district coordinator for the carers project. She is now excelling in this role and hopes to serve carers at a regional and even national level in the future.

 

“Nisha has transformed from a woman living in exclusion, poverty, and domestic violence to a strong, empowered woman who is a role model for many carers. And her efforts continue…” Padam Shrestha, LEADS Nepal Founder

 

This story was taken from our 2020 Impact Report. Take a look at the full Impact Report here.