An orphanage in crisis

February 21, 2019


What will be the future of the children?

At Rom Marg street in Samakhusi, an urban city located within Kathmandu, twenty children between the ages from seven to sixteen share their lives in Sarita's safe haven, an orphanage by the name of Chautarfi Mahila Bikash Sanstha. The orphanage is founded and managed by Sarita Khadka who have been taking care and brought happiness into the lives of children since 2006.

Within the next two weeks Sarita Khadka and the children at the orphanage faces the challenge of finding a new home as the lease to their house expires. Since Kathmandu today is a tight big city under development with high rises on properties and because of Sarita’s tight budget of a vegetable corner-shop and on-and-off donations for volunteers, it seems to be a tough combination to find a new home for the twenty orphans at Chautarfi Mahila Bikash Sanstha.

Visiting the orphanage, Sarita Khadka tells me her story with the help from one of the oldest kids as a translator. Sarita explains how difficult it will be to find a similar house to the same amount of money, and how worried she is about the future of the children. Sarita's safe haven in Samakhusi, Kathmandu, is a ground floor of a villa consisting of four small rooms and a hallway. The twenty children share a room with bunk beds, sleeping two or three in one bed. Next is a study room with a few pieces of furniture, a small tearoom which Sarita uses as an office and a kitchen.

With almost nothing, unimaginable few resources, Sarita and the twenty children at the orphanage have managed to enjoy everyday life. But now the future is unknown and daunting.

(Poulsen is doing photojournalism internship in Nepal )