Nepal: February 2010 – The children of Better Nepal Foundation had a month-long vacation during the winter. They were allowed to visit their relatives as long as they get picked up by someone from their families. While most of the children went back to their villages, there were three who got a special treat for topping their classes last school year. They were brought to India by the BNF officers and they had a ball travelling for three days and seeing different lovely sights on the road. It was both a reward for their hard work and an encouragement for the other children to study harder. Suresh Pokharel is 16 years old and is now in Grade 9. He is from the Gorkha District, around 300km away from the Nepalese capital Kathmandu. He came to the BNF home in 2003 with his younger brother Kishor, now 14 years old. They also have another brother called Ganesh who is 12 years old and is in Grade 6. Both of their parents are deceased. Suresh and his brothers are very bright children and they try their best in every area of opportunity. From Grade 6 onwards, Suresh has been consistently topping his class. His ambition to become a mechanical engineer someday is evident in his favourite hobby- fixing things like radios, bicycles, remote controls, etc. He says “I’m so happy to be in the BNF home and I’m so thankful to those who sponsor me.” Lakshman Gartri is from the western part of Nepal. He is now 13 years old and in Grade 6. His father abandoned their family when he was 5 years old. His younger brother lives with their mother who works in a bricks factory for a very little monthly income. She cannot afford to send Lakshman to school and so she did not hesitate to send him to the BNF home when she heard about it. Lakshman is very shy but excels in academics, sports and music. Even though he did not have a good start at school early on, he was able to keep up, topped his class in the last school year and received a double promotion. Aside from being hard working, he is attentive and obedient. He wants to become a musician someday and he would like to teach music to a lot of people. He says “I’m so happy and lucky to be in the BNF home.” Manisha Rai is 10 years old and from the Solukumbu District (a very remote village close to Everest). She is currently in grade 3. She has her two elder brothers. Both of their parents are dead and it is the reason why she started her schooling late. She came to the BNF home in 2009. She topped her class in the last academic year and received a double promotion. Manisha always smiles and is always ready to help others in whatever way she can. She wants to become a teacher so she could help educate the people in her village. She says “I’m thankful and happy to be in the home. In the home, I’m getting love, joy and a future.” The children of Better Nepal Foundation also enjoyed touring around the Central Zoo in Nepal on the first week of February 2010. They were very excited to take pictures of and with different kinds of animals. Though their tour was cut short by the bad weather, they all still had a good time.