Schools Far Away - Szkoły na końcu świata

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  • Lamu Tsering, Karma Choesang and Sonam Wangdu – the story of the Better Future Scholarship programme began with them in the summer of 2012, when they finished primary school in Jharkot, a high mountain village in the Anapurna region, and wanted to study further.

    Today, we are financing the schooling of nine children. They come from families who lived in self-sufficiency for centuries, their traditions passed down from generation to generation. But the modern, global economy and the growth of tourism have irreversibly changed their world. Mustang, once a prosperous part of Greater Tibet and closed to foreigners up to 1992, is now faced with poverty and backwardness. It is hard for people to survive without education. A lack of a profession condemns them to poverty or low-paid work in another country. Thanks to the Better Future Scholarship programme, these young scholars learn skills which not only give them a chance at a better future, but also enable them to preserve their cultural identity.
    Join us! Click on the portaits of our students, get to know their stories and check what you can do to help them.

    2014

    • Dolma Gurung

    • Tsering Penpa

    • Ngawang Gyatso

    2013

    • Ngawang Tsering

    • Sonam Tsering

    • Ngawang Thupten

    2012

    • Karma Choesang

    • Lhamu Tsering

    • Sonam Wangdu

  • Dolma Gurung was born in 1999. She comes from the village of Tangbe in Upper Mustang. At the school in Jharkot, she took great care of the youngest children. In March 2014, she joined four other colleagues in a four-year programme at the Tibetan Medical Institute in Katmandu (Nagtso Soring Bumshe Institute, Teen Deray, Swayambhu). If she is successful, she will be the second female doctor in Mustang.

    One year of her education (tuition, room & board) costs $967, or $81 per month. Since November 2015 all costs are coverd by one family from Krakow.

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  • Tsering Penpa was born in 2002 in Phaylak at the border between Upper and Lower Mustang. At the school in Jharkot he was the strongest boy in his class. An astute observer, always willing to learn. In April 2014 he began studying at the Tibetan Middle School in Pokar.

    One year of his education (tuition, room & board) costs $840, or $70 per month.

    Check what you can do to help: level the playing fields , multiply opportunities , add something , share

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  • Ngawang Gyatso was born in 2001 in Yara in Upper Mustang. Immediately upon his arrival at the school in Jharkot, his artistic and musical talents made themselves evident. He is also adept at analyzing and solving difficult problems. In April 2014 he began studying at the Tibetan Middle School in Pokar.

    One year of his education (tuition, room & board) costs $840, or $70 per month. His scholarship is covered by our friends from Cracow

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  • Ngawang Tsering was born in 1999 in Phaylak at the border of Upper and Lower Mustang. The teachers in Jharkot are sure he will become a good artisan. In the spring of 2013 he passed the entrance examination to the renowned school of painting at the Senchen Baudha monastery in Katmandu, and in June began a six-year course in painting thankas (Tibetan prayer pennants). In Nepal, this is a highly-respected and well-paid profession.

    One year of his education (tuition, room & board) costs $1,376 (103,200 Nepalese rupees), or $115 per month. Since Fall 2013 he is sponsored by Krakowian artist.

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  • Sonam Tsering was born in 1999 in Dzong, not far from Jharkot. He is gifted in many areas and interested in many things, a great companion and a great footballer. In March 2013, he joined two of last year’s graduates of the school in Jharkot and began a four-year programme at the Tibetan Medical Institute in Katmandu (Nagtso Soring Bumshe Institute, Teen Deray, Swayambhu), having previously been introduced to what being a doctor entails by helping out at the Tibetan Medical Centre connected with the monastery in Jharkot. His teachers are convinced that Sonam has what it takes to work become a doctor, a highly respected profession in Mustang.

    One year of his education (tuition, room & board) costs $967, or $81 per month.

    Check what you can do to help: level the playing fields , multiply opportunities , add something , share

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  • Ngawang Thupten was born in 1998. He comes from the village of Kangera in Upper Mustang. At the school in Jharkot, his carers were pleased that he often acted as orderly. He’s excellent at keeping order, yet has a great sense of humour. In March 2013 he joined two of last year’s graduates of the school in Jharkot and began a four-year programme at the Tibetan Medical Institute in Katmandu (Nagtso Soring Bumshe Institute, Teen Deray, Swayambhu), having previously been introduced to what being a doctor entails by helping out at the Tibetan Medical Centre connected with the monastery in Jharkot. His carers have no doubt that he is predisposed to becoming a doctor.

    One year of his education (tuition, room & board) costs $967, or $81 per month.

    Check what you can do to help: level the playing fields , multiply opportunities , add something , share

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  • Karma Choesang was born in 1999 in the village of Dzong. He is an exceptionally strong, independent person. In Jharkot he was the unsurpassed leader of the gang, and he is also a talented dancer and actor – yet he wants to become a doctor, fulfilling a family tradition. In March 2012 he began a four-year programme at the Tibetan Medical Institute in Katmandu (Nagtso Soring Bumshe Institute, Teen Deray, Swayambhu).

    One year of his education (tuition, room & board) costs $967, or $81 per month.

    Check what you can do to help: level the playing fields , multiply opportunities , add something , share

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  • Lhamu Tsering was born in 1996 in Kingar, not far from Jharkot. At the school in Jharkot, she was one of those students who had no problems in learning. From the beginning of her stay she wanted to become a doctor (amchi). She says “there are two few women in that profession”. In March 2012 she began a four-year programme at the Tibetan Medical Institute in Katmandu (Nagtso Soring Bumshe Institute, Teen Deray, Swayambhu). She has a chance to become the first female doctor in Mustang.

    One year of her education (tuition, room & board) costs $967, or $81 per month.

    Check what you can do to help: level the playing fields , multiply opportunities , add something , share

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  • Sonam Wangdu was born in 1997 in Chongur, at the foot of the Thorong-la ridge. He is an exceptional person, full of warmth, kind to others. At the school in Jharkot he was a captain. He is one of the best riders in the area, winning all the equestrian competitions at festivals. Wanting very much to become a painter of thankas (Tibetan religious pennants), he prepared for two years for the entrance examination to the six-year programme at the Senchen Baudha monastery in Katamandu. He began studying there in June 2012 .

    Urgently wanted sponsor for last two years of his studies! Annual cost of his education (tuition fees, boarding house, food) these are 1376 dollars (103200 Nepalese rupees), that is monthly 115 dollars.

    Check what you can do to help: level the playing fields , multiply opportunities , add something , share

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  • Schools Far Away has been supporting students from the distant Nepalese province of Mustang since 2011. That’s why we know that even in the poorest and most inaccessible places in the world, children have ambition and dreams for themselves. And that’s just how it should be – these allow them to develop themselves, and break down stereotypes.

    The Better Future Scholarship programme is aimed at maturing children who, despite many material limitations, are ready to begin studying in middle or professional schools. In supporting their education we give them a chance to grow, and a chance at finding better work in the future. We also hope that this will make it easier for them to consciously preserve their own identity.

    Get to know our scholars

  • Share
    - give us 1% of your income tax

    Schools Far Away is a public benefit organization from 2013. You can indicate our foundation in the annual tax return.

    Your donation supports our scholarship fund.

    KRS: 0000388584

  • Level the playing field
    - become a scholarship funder

    You can fund an annual scholarship for one of our charges. The monthly cost depends on the school and amounts 70, 81 or 115 dollars. Paymants can be made once a month, once a quarter or once a year.
    Get to know our students and check who doesn't have a permanent sponsor.

  • One times many is a lot
    - make a deposit to the scholarship fund

    $9,300 – that’s the total tuition fees for our scholars in the 2014/15 school year. Even a one-off donation is very important to us, since it goes to the Better Future Scholarship fund to help cover those costs.

  • Small sums add up
    - make regular payments for a child

    $87 – that’s the average monthly cost of schooling for one of our scholars. Staying in a boarding school is a monthly obligation lasting several years. That’s why even a small amount paid regularly can be vital.

  • Foundation management board:
    Magdalena Gołębiowska – Śmiałek, co-founder and President, political scientist
    Andrzej Śmiałek, co-founder, industrial designer

    Foundation supervisory board:
    Tadeusz Komosa, attorney
    Robert Robb Maciąg, travel book author
    Przemysław Wacyk, manager

    Special task force:
    Ewa Ginko, graphic designer for the foundation
    Marek Kalmus, consults on our educational and cultural projects
    Anuszka Maciąg, with the foundation in good times and bad
    Luiza Miklaszewska, organizes fundraising sales
    Jagoda Pietrzak, co-founder of Peron4, promotes the idea of the foundation in various ways

    All persons involved in the foundtaion activities take no financial benefits on account of it.

    Schools Far Away
    ul. Tyniecka 30/7,
    30-323 Kraków
    tel. +48 601 40 80 51

    Account number:
    37 1140 2017 0000 4402 1276 9354
    IBAN:
    PL 37 1140 2017 0000 4402 1276 9354
    BIC: BREXPLPWMUL

    KRS: 0000388584
    NIP: 676 244 35 26

    Contact us:

  • Partners:

    We look after our graduates of the school in Jharkot in cooperation with coordinators of the Schule macht Schule project from Austria and Germany, and the Nepalese non-governmental organization Shree Jharkot Traditional Medicine Center and School.

    You can visit their websites to learn more about the children from Jharkot:

    www.musgym.salzburg.at/jharkot
    www.jharkot-projekt-e-v.de

    Friends of the foundation:

    The portal Peron4.pl has taken us under its wing and has actively joined in on promoting the idea of our foundation.

    We owe our website to the studio Webchefs.

    We are grateful to the company Lacrosse for the English version of our website.

    The travel agency Opal Travel gives us constant support.

    Thanks to the Manggha Museum of Japanese Art and Technique, we were able to exhibit the work of the Italian photographer and conservator of Buddhist sacral art, Luigi Fieni.

    Without the support of the organizers of the Three elements Travel Festival and the involvement of many other people, the Robb Maciąg Viewers Fund Scholarships auction would not have been possible.

    Teachers from the Jacek Kuroń Middle School No. 12 in Poznan and their Parents’ Board have supported our scholarship budget on a number of occasions.

    With Małgorzata Tlałka we organized the skiing competition Nepal Days in the Tatras, which would not have been possible without help from AMC (the distributor of PETZL products in Poland) and Xlander (a manufacturer of children’s strollers and products for active parents).

  • How we began, what we have accomplished

    When travelling, many things happen by chance. We hadn’t planned to reach the Tibetan school in the small Himalayan village of Jharkot, at the border between Upper and Lower Mustang in Nepal on our daughter’s eighth birthday, especially since we were due to take part in a football match below the famous temple complex of Muktinath. We hadn’t planned to walk the Jhong ridge with some exceptional guides: seven-year-old Pema Wangchuk and thirteen-year-old Sonam Wangdu. Nor had we planned to establish a foundation upon our return home. But after staying at the school for several days, we were convinced that even in the poorest regions of the world there are places where the children can be happy if someone cares about them and helps prepare them for life in the modern world in a way which allows them to grow without losing their identity. If they have the desire, they should have the chance to make their ambitions and dreams come true, in keeping with their own traditions. They are not lacking in ability.
    That’s why the Better Future Scholarships programme was begun, together with projects promoting awareness of the rich heritage of Tibetan culture: youth workshops, a photographic exhibition, a series of open lectures organized in cooperation with Gazeta Wyborcza at the Gazeta Café in Krakow – Mustang, the Dying Kingdom – and the widely popular exhibition of the work of Italian art conservator and photographer Luigi Fieni at the Manggha Museum in Krakow. These events were supplemented by one-off charitable campaigns: a skiing competition with Małgorzata Tlałka – Nepal Days in the Tatras – a clothing sale – Give of Yourself – the book Off the Beaten Path published by Peron4, from which the proceeds supported our scholarship fund, and a huge auction concluding the spring edition of the Three Elements Travel Festival – Viewers Fund Scholarships - in March 2014 in Krakow.