The Kumari Project – Doing Good in Nepal
The Holidays mark the season of gratitude, giving back, and sharing.
As the holiday season draws near, we want to take moment to reflect on the positive ripples of impact we’ve been fortunate enough to create in the lives of others this year. Through The Yogi Foundation, our commitment to ‘doing good’ extends across various global environmental and societal causes. This year, we want to highlight a cause our foundation helps fund that is very near and dear to our hearts.
Nestled in Nepal, recognized as one of the world’s most impoverished nations, there’s a special orphanage with which we’ve maintained a close bond since its founding in 2014. The founder of the project, Arun Storrs, has Nepalese roots herself and was adopted by former Yogi employee Beth Eldridge when she was just seven weeks old. Arun named the project “Kumari,” which means “Princess” in Nepali, because she feels every girl deserves to be treated as royalty, regardless of family circumstances.
Join us on a heartfelt journey as we open the door to The Kumari Project. Here, girls find more than just shelter; they discover a haven that provides them with a comforting sense of normalcy and a nurturing home designed to foster creativity and a radiant, promising future.
Fostering Creativity and Career Prospects
All 12 children living in the “Safe House,” as the Kumari Project is referred to in contrast to other Nepalese children’s homes can engage in artistic activities and choose between dance and music lessons. These offerings are designed to gradually introduce them to various forms of expression, strengthen their self-confidence, instill a passion for knowledge acquisition, and enable them to life-long learning.
Additionally, the Safe House facilitates exchanges between the children and professionals from various job profiles. They can speak with local art teachers, gallery owners, and foreign artists as well as forest rangers, pilots, marketing and IT professionals to decide on suitable career paths. As all of the girls are now in their teenage years and completing their final years of education, they are exploring some of the career paths they have encountered in the Safe House.
See How The Stories of The Kumari Family Members Unfold
Devaki completed her Plus-2 program, equivalent to the senior years of American high schools, with a focus on the hospitality industry and has already completed valuable internships. She now lives in the countryside and is working on her professional future, seeking ongoing guidance. Her younger sister Durga has completed her Plus-2 program in science, and is now entering a Bachelor’s program in Hospitality Management.
Minu, who has just started her Plus-2 program in the natural sciences, is exploring IT and Management. She is an outstanding student and will surely be going on to get a Bachelor’s degree. Her little brother, Anjan is always first in his class and yearns to be a football star.
Pramila and Pramisha are also siblings. While Pramila successfully completed her Plus-2 program with an artistic focus and aspires to a career in animation, she gains practical experience in a gallery to understand the economic side of art. She is also teaching art to 1st- to 5th graders in a local school. Meanwhile, Pramisha is in Class 10, producing original art and studying for the important SEE, a national exam that is her final hurdle before Art College.
Two more girls at the Safe House have recently completed Class 10 and entered higher education: Muna is in a Plus 2 program specializing in humanities and social sciences, hoping to become a psychologist while Minu might want to be a pilot. Rabina has entered a 3-year Diploma Course for Health Assistant, which will hopefully enable her to work either in a local hospital or as a village doctor. She has also shown interest in Ayurvedic medicine, and Kumari Project staff are encouraging her to pursue (and combine) both.
Fulmaya and Amrita have just completed their 10th grade, passing the SEE with flying colors! Both are enrolled in a Plus-2 program in Business Management. Fulmaya is also an apprentice dance teacher, assisting her long-time dance teacher with younger kids at another children’s home. Amrita is starting an internship studying inventory skills with a local clothing designer.
If you are curious to know more about the Kumari Project and want to know how it has evolved over the years, click here.