people and places suspend Nepal Volunteer Programme

By Sallie Grayson. Filed in people and places history and info, project background  |  
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It is with great sadness and frustration that we have to suspend matching volunteers to our partner projects in Nepal.

It is  illegal to work in Nepal – even as a volunteer – without a work permit.

Restriction to work:

  1. (1) A foreigner having obtained a visa as a tourist or his family member pursuant to these Rules shall not be allowed to work, with or without receiving remuneration, in any industry, business, enterprise or organisation during his stay in Nepal “

The process for acquiring a work permit is  currently prohibitively expensive and time consuming – for the projects and for  volunteers. We are working hard with our local partners in Nepal to find a satisfactory solution to this challenge, if at all possible.

In the meantime, it would be irresponsible of us to encourage volunteers to break the laws of Nepal.

If you choose to travel with another volunteer organisation to Nepal, we strongly advise you to check that they are able to assist you in applying for a work permit. We do hope we can solve this situation soon – our volunteers are very much needed. We do work with projects in other parts of the world that require the same skills as the Nepal projects – please email kate@travel-peopleandplaces.co.uk for more information”

4 Comments

  1. Comment by kate:

    This is SO IMPORTANT !!! I have confidence that all our blog readers will appreciate our position … and any advice and support you can offer will of course be husgely appreciated !!!
    But in the meantime folks – please don’t put yourselves or those you love at risk.

  2. Comment by Sallie:

    I should have added that if you travel to Nepal to volunteer without the correct permit your insurance is almost certain to be invalid

  3. Comment by Sallie:

    We are getting lots of comments in from volunteers.
    heres the first one from Evelyn who volunteereed at Amar Jyoti in Pokhara – http://www.travel-peopleandplaces.co.uk/projects/211/Education-Development-in-rural-Nepal-(ED)
    “I have just read the latest p&p newsletter which contains the information about needing a work permit to be a volunteer in Nepal. I am greatly saddened by this development and wanted to say how sorry I am that all your work, and that of Marcus and Hari Amar Jyoti schoolhas come to this unsatisfactory position. I suppose we should be grateful that at least Amar Jyoti has had a bit of a leg-up (as it were!), but what a shame it all is. I do feel that the people who will miss out are some of the very people who most need the input volunteers can bring.
    At the moment, I’m just holding you all – including the staff and children of the school – in a very sad, imagined group hug.”

  4. Comment by kate:

    … and the next comment from Peter who has volunteered twice in a school in Kathmandu:

    “I was alarmed to read in the current People and Places newsletter that the organisation has felt compelled to suspend its association with projects in Nepal.
    I am sure you and your colleagues have agonised hard and long before reaching this decision which I know will be regretted by those of us who love the country and want to make a difference to the lives of its wonderful people.
    Speaking for myself, I am sorry I will be unable to continue with my project of turning advanced English lessons into constructive fun by producing a small newspaper with stories written and pictures taken by the children. I found great support for the idea both from children and teaching staff.
    My subject is merely the tip of the iceberg. I fear that without support from volunteers – in particular volunteers from the UK – the children will suffer and much of the hard work of the past will be undermined.
    Please keep me in touch with progress, or the lack of it, and if I can be of help as you study the complexities of the situation, feel free to call on me.”

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