Anita, Nepal’s Earthquake Survivor, Receives Parent-Faculty Scholarship

UWC is an ideal place for exceptional individuals who have the made the best use of the opportunities available to them, and Anita is one such extraordinary human being who will be attending MUWCI thanks to the parent-faculty scholarship fund started this year at the college.

Why Anita? Because she is truly a changemaker and lives the UWC mission everyday.

Anita’s compassion and perseverance are beyond inspirational. She began her 12-hour walk to find shelter after the first earthquake in Nepal only to witness her hometown, Kafalchaur in Nuwakot district, badly hurt with almost 50 destroyed houses and an entire neighbourhood buried under rubbles. This is the same village that she had to abandon many years ago after her mother’s death and father’s remarriage.

Despite the painful memories, she returned with her cousin and worked hard to rebuild her community after the earthquake. Aakash Mohpal, a member of the UWC Nepal National Committee and a MUWCI alumnus, spent sometime with Anita and was completely moved by her story:

“In the first few days there, she helped dig out food from the store, and built temporary shelters for people using whatever tarpaulin they could find. Soon, a stench began engulfing the village and the next task was in order — pulling out and disposing off animal carcasses. Anita and her friends put themselves to work again. When these first order issues were taken care of, people needed to communicate with the outside world, both to ask and report survival to distant relatives and search for aid. But the earthquake had knocked out all power lines. This time, Anita and her friends went around the village looking for undamaged solar panels, put them together, so that people could charge their cell phones and make the calls they had been dying to make.”

As a child, family hardships of great intensity only made her stronger. She lost her mother, witnessed her father’s remarriage, struggled with her step mother, and found herself to be completely alone in her village. Still hopeful, Anita made her way to Kathmandu to live with her aunt who was also struggling for livelihood but managed to put her in school. A student in the morning and a maid in the evenings, Anita had to learn to take care of herself at an early age. Such adversity could break anyone, but she relentlessly pushed herself and saw light when she gained excellent results in 10th grade at her SLC examination. Thereafter, she began working at a mask factory, earning Rs.1 per mask (roughly 1 US cent). What’s remarkable is that she wasn’t even earning to make ends meet for herself, but instead to pay for her brother’s education.

An individual like Anita is hard to come by. In a multicultural environment like UWC, she will not only thrive and receive more opportunities to explore her talent and compassion but will continue to inspire more people through her actions . She has dealt with her circumstances with great zeal, composure, and hope, and has repeatedly proved to be a fearless and empathetic leader.

Scholarships make it possible for exceptional individuals like Anita to make it to UWC. We strongly value diversity beyond nationalities and encourage students to apply regardless of their parents’ ability to pay. This year, we extend our sincere gratitude to parents and teachers of students at UWC Mahindra College who jointly supported this endeavour of making it possible for Anita, someone affected by the earthquake in Nepal, to attend UWC on a full need-based scholarship. With your continued support, more students like Anita can benefit from a UWC education and channel their great enthusiasm and perseverance toward self-empowerment and greater social change.

Interviewed by Aakash Mohpal (MUWCI, Class of ‘05)


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