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Voyage Népal 2018

Nepal trip 2018

Comme chaque fois, l’expérience du Népal a laissé des traces chez les
visiteuses et visiteurs. Nous publions des textes rédigés par des élèves qui
sont partis au Népal du 21 mars au 4 avril 2018.

As always, the experience of Nepal left its mark on visitors. We publish texts
written by students who left for Nepal from 21 March to 4 April 2018.

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« Les enfants du centre Sagarmatha sont doux et
ont tous quelque chose qui les différencie des
autres. Leur maturité m'a marquée. Il n'est pas
juste qu'ils aient eu à vivre ce qu'ils ont vécu
à un si jeune âge. Ces quelques jours passés
avec eux m'ont permis d'apprendre énormément.
Une vraie leçon de vie. »
Alicia E.

« Ce furent deux semaines formidables et touchantes au Népal.
La joie de ces enfants fut magique à voir. Je suis heureuse
que nous ayons pu leur apporter le sourire. (…) Katmandou
est une ville très polluée, mais la luminosité, les temples et les
couleurs des drapeaux sont magnifiques. Les Népalais sont très
accueillants. Si je pouvais refaire ce voyage, ce serait avec
grand plaisir."
Amandine

« 5h30 du matin. Les chiens aboient. Les
lumières du centre Sagarmatha
s’allument lentement et on entend les
portes de nos voisins s'ouvrir. Une
dizaine de minutes plus tard, un enfant sort
une corde a sauter et saute seul dans la
cour et la pénombre de l’aube népalaise.
De plus en plus d’enfants sortent du
bâtiment principal et le rejoignent. Les
chiens aboient de nouveau. Le ciel indigo
se colorera d’orange, puis de blanc, et une
nouvelle journée débute lentement.
On toque à notre porte. Nous avons à peine le temps d’apercevoir 6 petits pieds qui
s'enfuient en riant. Quelques secondes plus tard, on toque à nouveau, mais cette fois, une
petite fille en robe de princesse rose et deux petits garçons aux regards vivaces nous
sourient devant celle-ci, avant de se tourner en riant et de s'éclipser par les escaliers. Les
prochaines cinq minutes s'enchaînent exactement comme la première, mais cette fois, les
petits curieux se font rapidement attraper. Les rires deviennent un écho dans le couloir, et
plusieurs enfants timides continuent de nous guetter.

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Nous sommes emportés par une marée de petits nous invitant à jouer au loup dans la cour.
Ne vous fiez pas à leur taille... ils ont une sacré endurance! J’aurais voulu que ce moment
soit intemporel, qu’il dure à jamais. C’est en courant avec ces enfants de quatre à six ans
que l’on perçoit une réalité transparente dans notre vie quotidienne. Notre champ de vision
semble moins filtré, plus réel, sincère et précieux. L'énergie, détermination et joie de vivre
qu’ils irradient sont uniques et sortent du cadre de notre société de consommation.
Leurs regards persistent encore dans ma mémoire, avec cette idée terrifiante que leur avenir
ne tient en parti qu’à nos collectes et dons. Je sais que le ciel indigo se colorera d’orange,
puis de blanc, et qu’une nouvelle journée suivra son cours. Je sais aussi qu’ils possèdent
une maturité digne de nos plus sages, et une force qui les fera tous, petits et grands,
surmonter toutes ces montagnes sans doute plus haute que Sagarmatha. »
Anna-Maria

« The Nepal trip was one of the most enlightening experiences of my
life. I saw so many different and amazing things, from the busy streets
of Kathmandu to the beautiful colors in the stores, every day I saw
something new and beautiful. My favorite aspect of the trip was
definitely spending time in the Sagarmatha orphanage with the
children. The happiness and excitement that these children had was
such an incredible thing to witness. Every time we went to the
orphanage, they always had big smiles on their faces and absolutely
loved to play with us. I learned so much from them, by just watching
them play and interact with the world around them. After spending the
day with them, a couple of girls and I spent the night at the orphanage.
It was such a memorable experience. Before dinner, one of the older
children led everyone in prayer, it was such an amazing moment, as I felt so immersed in
their culture. The next morning all the children ate breakfast and did a small warm up to get
them ready for the day. Being able to share this experience with them was very touching,
and it allowed me to see what an average day and night was like for them. Spending time
with the children enabled me understand that one does not need much to be happy.
Seeing how grateful and joyful the children were allowed me be very thankful for what
I have. It was definitely a life changing experience that has changed my perception of the
world around me and the way one must treat others. »

Audrey

« The two week long experience in Nepal was truly
incredible. We got to see a lot of Kathmandu, as well as
other places outside of the city. The visits to the ILO and
the Swiss Embassy in Nepal were very inspiring, and helped
me learn some more about the country and what could be
done there for improvement. Because of these visits I've
gotten a taste of what I am interested in doing in the future. I
always thought that I wanted to work in Human Rights and
this was an affirmation to my future studies.

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When we first came to Sagarmatha Center, we had a warm welcome by all the children and
Beena, their « adoptive mother ». All the children had smiles from ear to ear. They were all
so joyful, despite everything they have had to go through. When I stayed there for a night, I
saw how much independence and love each one of them have. The younger children
were always helped by one of the older children. I was even helped by one of the
youngest girls who grabbed my hand and led the way to where I had to wash my hands and
where I was to be seated - next to her.
Every child at SASS has an amazing discipline and is extremely polite. During my stay
there, I also had the opportunity to see that everything is very well organised at the center.
An example to the level of discipline they all have, is the amount of studying they
do everyday. They have two hours in the afternoon and an hour in the morning before
leaving for school. I was honestly impressed by the younger kids focusing and working for so
long. All this was a true lesson for myself and my studying habits.
The second home we visited was Punarbal, it is a orphanage for HIV/Aids infected children.
They are discriminated from the society, but thanks to this home, the children go to
school and are treated like any other child. What I found amazing was the dance show
they did for us. It brought me joy when I saw how happy they were to dance. The Nepal trip
was an unbelievable experience, and I really hope I can go back some day. »
Benedicte

« The Nepal trip of 2018 was a truly wonderful
experience. We were able to meet many new and
different people and discover a new country, unlike
the one we live in. The days spent at the orphanage
were filled with fun and joy. Finding different activities
every day for the children of the orphanage enabled
us to connect and interact with them. The variety of
ages in the orphanage meant that we could see what
it was like for all ages to live in such unimaginable
conditions. Speaking with the girls closest to our age,
13 to 16, made us discover that we had more in common then we thought, in music,
celebrities and tv shows.
These girls were very open to new things and seemed very interested every time we spoke,
asking more questions, strengthening their English and laughing with each other. The
younger kids were also very outgoing, except for the one shy one here and there, but it
wasn’t too hard to get them involved in the activities and become much more comfortable
very quickly. Seeing them smile and laugh was so touching just because it showed us
how happy they were and that we were making an impact. From blowing balloons to
painting with them or even just sitting down and using chalk to draw on the floor, it was so
lovely to be able to interact with all of them and discover a side of life we are not exposed to
in our everyday life. These kids showed us how much fun you can have and how happy you
can be while meeting new people. It was a great two weeks and I hope to be able to do
something like this again, and for the people of the years to come to enjoy this experience as
much as we all did, to make something great out of the experience. »
Charlotte

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« It has now been over a month since I returned from Nepal. Time has
flown by so fast and I can still remember every detail from the trip. I
miss everything about our time in Kathmandu.
The hotel, the food, the activities but most importantly, spending time
with the orphans. I was definitely scared before we went. I am not the
best around children and the language barrier would probably make it
even harder for me. Despite all that, it was an absolute pleasure to
spend time with these children. They were all so unique and enthusiastic
to see us, it really felt like having the younger siblings I never had. From
the first day, I saw the joy on the faces of the thirty or so kids there, they
were definitely very happy to see us and that showed.
I loved every single day at the orphanage. From building legos, to cooking momos to
going shoe shopping with the children, every activity brought me back to my younger
years and really touched me on a personal level. I of course felt sadness from these children
who were unlucky enough to have lost their parents. I am privileged and I know that, but the
fact I was able to bring a little joy in their lives in the weeks we spent with them really fills me
with satisfaction. I am overall extremely thankful to the teachers and the Swiss Organisation
Sagarmatha for enabling me to live such a great human adventure that definitely changed
my vision of the world and, I hope, made me a better person. »

Emmanuel

« Le voyage au Népal est une expérience que je
n’oublierai jamais et a formé un des plus beau
chapitre de ma vie. On a tant fait ! Visiter
Kathmandu, passer du temps avec les enfants
de Sagarmatha, de Punarbal, et bien plus! Ce
voyage a été rempli d’aventures, de surprises
et de découvertes. Cette aventure de 2
semaines, m’a ouvert l’esprit, m’a fait découvrir
de nouvelles personnes, de nouvelles cultures,
de nouvelles histoires. Ces enfants m’ont tant
appris. On est si imparfait, on fait tant d’erreurs.
Mais on apprend. Mais on comprend. Et on accepte cette vérité. Découvrir. Trouver.
Explorer. Visiter. Chercher. Rencontrer. Ces verbes décrivent des moments de pur bonheur
durant ce voyage. »
Gabrielle

« The Nepal humanitarian trip has influenced me so much more
than I expected. It's a trip I still think about everyday, and has
made me realize how different life is in Nepal compared to
Switzerland.

One aspect that particularly affected my view of this trip was meeting
one of the girls at the orphanage, Sabita. Though everybody made

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us feel so welcome to SASS, Sabita is the girl I know I will remember for the rest of my life.
Sabita is 15 years old, and has lived in Nepal all her life. She has never left the country and
radiates so much positivity with whoever she is with. To me, she is so strong and committed ;
living alongside more or less 45 children everyday is not something I would consider easy.
When I spent the night at the orphanage, I had the chance to see what everyday life is like
there. Sabita offered us her bed for the night because she wanted us to feel as much at
home as she could. Before leaving for bed, I showed Sabita my drawings in my notebook,
and she asked me to draw her. I spent most of the night drawing her. In the morning, she
was in charge of making all the beds in the dorm, helping in the kitchen, and then later,
studying. She will remain an inspiration to me, and close to my heart. »
Kate

« On the second day we went to SASS to go
meet the kids, which still puts a smile on my face
just thinking about the moment. Each kid greeted
us with a ‘namaste’ and we were given a
traditional scarf for good luck. Every single kid
had a smile and was so kind and open to play
with us.

Just in these two weeks I learnt that
happiness comes from so much more
than what we know. This also motivates me to do more to help these kids to see there
smiles and make their life a little easier step by step. »
Katarina

« Bien que nous ayons anticipé notre arrivée au Népal depuis de
nombreux mois, l’arrivée à Katmandu fut un choc. Des couleurs vives
qui ornent les rues, aux bruits incessants des voitures qui parcourent la
ville (en grande partie sur des routes sans goudron), cet endroit est aussi
magique qu’il est différent de la Suisse. Une énergie électrique semble y
abriter alors qu’une épaisse couverture de poussière recouvre le ciel. Cette
ville est simplement superbe, mais malheureusement les cicatrices du
tremblement de terre de 2015 n’ont pas encore entièrement disparu. Néanmoins, la
population reste optimiste et chaleureuse malgré les pertes qu’elle a subies, ce qui fut une
vrai source d’inspiration durant mon témoignage.
Bien que cette ville unique en son genre soit inoubliable, ce sont les personnes du centre
SASS qui m’ont sans aucun doute fait la plus grande impression. Tous étaient
incroyablement gentils et émouvants. Ils m’ont certainement apporté plus que tout ce
que j’aurais pu leur apporter.
Ma valise était plus légère au retour mais mon cœur restera touché à jamais par leur
positivité et leur incroyable perspective sur la vie. Ils nous ont accueillis à bras ouverts et ont
tout fait pour que nous puissions au mieux découvrir leur culture. Nous avons tous gagné

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une deuxième famille à travers SASS et je me sens privilégiée d’avoir pu travailler avec une
si belle organisation.
Bien que le voyage fut par moments difficile, je ne le changerais pas pour autant. Les
obstacles surmontés et les expériences vécues m’ont rendue plus résiliente en tant
que personne et j’espère simplement que j’ai pu être utile à ce centre. Un grand merci à
la famille Sherpa et à tous ceux qui ont contribué à faire de cette expérience une opportunité
si spéciale pour nous tous. »
Lara

« We don’t realise how lucky we are until we meet
somebody worse off than we are.' Many people say this,
most of the time when I hear people say this it has to do
with money and/or the chances money provides. On this
trip however I discovered that many people compared
to these children are unlucky, not because they were
poorer than them, or anything to do with wealth, but
because they were unhappy.

The kids we met smiled, laughed and played - they were kids in all sense of the word - and
they are lucky. They are lucky because they know what happiness, innocence and childhood
is. I felt privileged not only because I got to contribute to the environment that helped them
develop and strengthen this happiness, but also and more importantly because I got meet
them, talk to them and learn from them. They taught me more about happiness and I will be
forever changed by this, just like how I will forever remember them and what beautiful people
they are and will be. »
Lauren

« Ce voyage au Népal m’a donné l’occasion
d'apprendre plusieurs chose ; il m’a ouvert les yeux.
D’abord, nous avons une chance incroyable de vivre
ici et d’avoir une bonne éducation. J’ai aussi pris
conscience que toutes les petites choses que
nous pouvons faire ici peuvent faire une énorme
différence pour les personnes qui ont besoin
d’aide. J'ai aussi appris qu'il ne faut pas juger
d’après les apparences. On pourrait croire que les
gens au Népal sont tous malheureux, mais ce n’est
pas nécessairement vrai. J'espère que ce que nous avons fait aura un impact dans la vie de
ces enfants et qu'ils pourront avoir un futur bien meilleur que si personne ne les avait
accueillis. »
Matteo

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« Le voyage au Népal est sûrement le voyage plus incroyable
que j’ai fait à ce jour et je suis certaine de ne jamais oublier.
Ce voyage m’a non seulement permis de découvrir un pays
fascinant et sa riche culture, mais m’a aussi donné
l’opportunité de faire connaissance avec des enfants les plus
adorables au monde, les enfants du centre Sagarmatha
(SASS). Il n’y avait pas un moment ennuyeux lorsque nous
étions avec eux : on jouait, on riait, on courait les uns après
les autres. Lorsque je jouais avec eux, je me sentais
redevenir enfant.
Ce qui m’a marquée et émue le plus, c’est leur joie et
l’énergie contagieuse qu’ils ont tous, malgré le peu qu’ils ont et ce qu'ils ont perdu.
Cette joie de vivre est ce qui me manque le plus.
Le respect et l’admiration que j’ai pour tous ceux qui contribuent à fournir à ces enfants un
environnement heureux et un avenir prometteur est incommensurable.
J’aimerais remercier chaleureusement tous les professeurs et accompagnants qui nous ont
entouré pendant ce voyage merveilleux. J’encourage fortement tous les élèves à s’inscrire
pour un prochain voyage : c’est une expérience fantastique que je garderai dans mon cœur
pendant longtemps. »
Margot

« Le Népal, tout comme ses habitants, est un
pays de contrastes: situé stratégiquement
dans un croisement de cultures, il absorbe
différentes croyances et créé une entité
nouvelle à part entière. Sa richesse en matière
de traditions m'a frappée dès mon arrivée à
l'aéroport: les couleurs assaillent la vue, les
odeurs s'immiscent dans les narines et la
poussière se dépose sur chaque parcelle de
notre corps. Pourtant, malgré le contraste
provoqué entre l'environnement (trop)
calme de la Suisse et le chaos du Népal, on se sent immédiatement à l'aise et accueilli
dans cette culture complètement différente.
Rencontrer des enfants et des adolescents ayant environ notre âge mais vivant des
quotidiens diamétralement opposés au mien a été une expérience que je vais chérir
pour le restant de ma vie. En effet, nous sommes, en tant qu'élèves d'une école
internationale, sensibilisés dès notre plus petite enfance aux causes telles que la pauvreté.
Malheureusement, peu d'entre nous avons la chance de réellement voir de nos propres yeux
ces situations tragiques. Avoir la possibilité de rencontrer, d'interagir et de nouer des liens
d'amitié avec ces personnes a renforcé mes convictions: mon métier devra impérativement
oeuvrer à améliorer leurs vies. J'espère pouvoir revenir l'année prochaine ! »
Marta

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« The Nepal trip was a wonderful experience which I will never forget. The
trips to SASS were particularly striking moments for me. Our numerous visits
to this center were all different but each experience was incredibly
memorable. Being able to spend time in this home and observe how
tirelessly the people in charge would work to give the children everything
they would ever need was inspirational.
When we visited SASS, we brought suitcases filled with supplies and
materials that we had collected from Geneva, which we sorted out and distributed
amongst the children. We also organised various activities throughout the day such as

games, chalk drawing, puzzles, card games and board games. Meeting these children was
definitely the highlight of the trip. They treated each other like one giant family and
welcomed us so genuinely. I was really struck by how strong, resilient and caring they
all are. »

Meera

« Ce voyage au Népal a été une des meilleures expériences de ma vie - et
probablement même la meilleure. Je suis vraiment content de tout ce
que nous avons fait pour aider le centre Sagarmatha et d'avoir vu les
sourires heureux des enfants. Ils étaient tous pleins d'énergie, joyeux et
toujours contents de nous voir. J'espère un jour retourner au Népal et aider
les personnes qui en ont le plus besoin. J’ai vraiment aimé faire partie de ce
projet. » Niccolo

« Dès notre arrivée au Népal, je savais que ce
voyage allait être une expérience complètement
inoubliable. Le voyage de l’aéroport jusqu’à l’hôtel
m’a particulièrement marqué, car il a effacé toutes
préconceptions que j’ai pu avoir avant le voyage.
Le dépaysement était intense, nous étions
exposés à la pollution et à la poussière ont été
des problèmes bien plus importants que ce à
quoi nous nous attendions. Cependant, nous avons vite appris que le Népal est un pays
de contrastes. D’un côté, la pollution et la poussière contaminent la vie de tous les jours,
mais de l’autre côté, la richesse culturelle est incalculable et l’amabilité des gens
surprenante. J’ai personnellement été impressionné par la gentillesse et l’hospitalité des
Népalais, et les saveurs de leur nourriture si délicieuse. L’aspect humanitaire du voyage était
enrichissant, mais la combinaison de l’aspect humanitaire avec la découverte de la capitale à
talents cachés que sont Katmandou et les montagnes de Shivapuri ont fait de ce voyage une
expérience à ne pas refuser ! Ce voyage restera dans ma mémoire pendant longtemps, Il
s’agit d’une expérience incroyable dans un pays énigmatique, dont le futur, à mon avis, est
prometteur. »
Roland

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« From 21st of March till 4th of April, I
participated in a trip to Nepal. I opened my
eyes completely to what life is like outside
my bubble. Each person who participated in
the trip had to raise money as a donation. I
did this by organizing a fashion show on 17th
of March and I used the money I raised from
selling tickets. We took off on 28th of March,

Wednesday. We first flew to Abu Dhabi for 7
hours and then from Abu Dhabi to
Kathmandu airport. It was a long flight but my friends made it bearable. We got to
Kathmandu and the first thing we saw were monkeys around our house. Next day we went
to the Swiss embassy to witness a presentation on reconstruction projects following the
2015 earthquake in Nepal.

Then we went to visit SASS, a home where we met wonderful children whom we will never
forget. We went there almost every day. The kids were unbelievably adorable and
affectionate which made us want to spend even more time with them. Also on 17th of
March, we had brought suitcases to school to fill them up with toys and clothes we had
bought for the children. When we gave these clothes to the children the smile on their faces
was incredible.

We also went to many places like Bhaktapur, Punarbal home, Shivapuri... In one of the days,
we learned how to make momos, which are dumplings. It was helpful to learn such a skill
considering now I have an idea of their culture. One of the days I learned how to dance
Nepalese dances and taught them what I learned from the fashion show. Then we went to
buy shoes for the little children in the orphanage. The look on their faces was
mesmerizing, as if how we feel about a dessert at the end of the day. We each had to
hold the hand of one of the children.

Then we bought paint from their local stores in order to paint the classroom that the
children work in. This was one of my favorite parts of the trip as we made a
difference. Now they will be more enthusiastic about working on their education and they
will look at a nicer wall than what it used to be. In my opinion, this trip developed my
perspective in every single way. It helped me improve my skills in cooking, painting, running
around. It helped me show my affection to each one of them.

Making them smile had an enormous effect on how I feel about the world. This trip has
been helpful in every single way bringing out a new side of me I never knew I had. »

Tara

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« It has been a month since we got back from Nepal but I can still
remember the warmth, food and the culture. This has been one of my
favourite experiences I have ever done for numerous reasons. First I
got to visit and see a new country and explore a new culture I have
never seen before from the food, traditions and their overall
environment.

One of my favourite parts of the trip was when we went to visit SASS. I
was happily surprised when seeing all the kids, who without having much, they
still had the biggest smiles I have ever seen on humans. Their smiles were
radiating and had created a cheerful, ecstatic atmosphere and just pure happiness
that is like no other.

I am so thankful I got the opportunity to be part of this trip and got to be with this
team as we were all supportive of each other, worked together and had fun exploring
a new part of the world and got to spend time with people and children who are from
there and were so kind. Thank you for everyone who helped build this trip into what is
was. »

Alicia G.

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