Annual Review: Funding future Tibetan nurses

Grant amount: £2,400 (Year one of a four year course)

Whilst visiting Delhi at the end of last year, our CEO Philippa Carrick, met Kalsang Dolma and Pema Bhuti, who are both training to be nurses with the help of Tibet Relief Fund. This was made possible through a bequest from Vanya Kewley Lambert who was particularly keen to help provide training for medical students.

Kalsang Dolma and Pema Bhuti
Kalsang Dolma and Pema Bhuti

Kalsang and Pema are both from Nepal but have recently moved to India so they can complete their four-year BSc nursing degrees at Jamia Hamdard university in Delhi. They are fantastic examples of how younger Tibetans are really striving to become more self-sufficient and how the support of people like you can help them to achieve their goals.

Their schedules are full on with lessons from 8.30am to 5.30pm Monday to Friday, plus assignments to complete at the weekends. Both girls are staying as paid guests in lodgings but this is very expensive for them and is also far away from the campus. They are hoping to move to a local Indian hostel to cut down on travel time and expenses and participate more fully in university life.

Kalsang is 18 years old and has always wanted to be a nurse and work for the Tibetan community. She has five siblings, including two teachers and a monk. Her mother is in small business and her father has retired from the Indian army.

Pema is 19 and has four sisters. Her mother is a carpet weaver and her father works as a security guard for a carpet factory. Neither girl’s parents would have been able to send them to university to fulfil their potential without the help from Vanya’s bequest. Pema also wants to work with the Tibetan community after completing her degree, with a further qualification in child psychology.

The skills these girls will bring back to their communities are invaluable. As Tibetans continue to live in exile from their home country, it becomes more and more important that they create self-sufficient communities where every Tibetan can realise their full potential and lead fulfilling lives.

Jamia Hamdard University in Delhi
Jamia Hamdard University in Delhi

Around 20 other Tibetans are studying at Jamia Hamdard, with two other Tibetan students in Kalsang and Pema’s class. Whist this is great, it would be wonderful if more young Tibetans were able to access university. Our Empowering the Vision project aims to help Tibetans to reach their potential just like Kalsang and Pema.

This is why your support makes such a difference. As long as projects like this continue to flourish and the right support is put in place, it really won’t be long until Tibetans in exile can lead fulfilling and self-sufficient lives.

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