Please join the Parasol Tahoe Community Foundation and the Changing Lives Nepal Fund in welcoming Parshu Dahal to the United States. Parshu is the Executive Director of the Society Development Center (SODEC), a grassroots non-profit in Nepal focused on reducing poverty through sustainable organic agriculture and other programs. Parshu will share the story of farmers in these remote communities of the Himalayan foothills, discuss the impact of organic cash crops, and describe ongoing projects and future plans. This event will take place at the Parasol Tahoe Community Foundation on September 12, 2013 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. The presentation will begin at 6:00 p.m. Organic tea, grown in Nepal, will be served along with light hors d’oeuvres.
Changing Lives Nepal, a Fund held at the Parasol Tahoe Community Foundation, works to catalyze sustainable, effective change in Nepal by identifying local individuals with initiative, supporting them with strategic small grants to foster new projects, develop required infrastructure, cover gaps in garnered funding, and sustain momentum at critical junctures. Supporting individuals who take action in their communities means supporting change on a personal level. Parshu Dahal is one such individual.
In 2001, Parshu Dahal helped start the Society Development Center (SODEC). Parshu wanted to address poverty in his village region by focusing on organic growing and processing of tea for the export market. Realizing that tea could grow on otherwise useless land, he organized villagers and trained them on the planting, care, and harvest of tea. Parshu has inspired field staff to work on a volunteer basis when necessary, has gained the trust of risk-averse farmers, and has successfully tapped local, governmental, and non-profit resources–including writing a major grant to build the factory. In 2012, the processing unit, collectively owned by 155 farmer families, went into operation. This is the first large cooperative tea factory of its kind in Nepal.
Parshu successfully initiated a new regional cash-crop industry that allows farmers to become economically independent and self-reliant. Parshu is now leading a 5-year project planting organic almonds in rural Nepal and helping farmers in a new area start an income-generating industry for their future. Parshu predicts that by the end of the project, at least 200 farmers will be directly involved in farming on their own private land, more than doubling their current household incomes and creating a new, locally-owned cash crop industry.
Parshu will be visiting the United States in September to observe and learn more about organic farming, sustainable food models, rooftop gardening, high-altitude gardening, and multi-cropping, in order to utilize new techniques in SODEC’s current and future projects in Nepal. He will be speaking at the University of San Francisco and UC Davis. Parshu will be also be visiting tea outlets and meeting with tea specialists to better understand marketing, quality, wholesale, retail, and packaging as the Nepal tea factory begins to produce for the export market.
The Parasol Tahoe Community Foundation is proud to help our donors achieve their philanthropic goals here and in Nepal. We are all thrilled to be able to share this experience with our community.
To learn more about the work the Changing Lives Nepal Fund supports, please visit www.changinglivesnepal.org
To donate to the Changing Lives Nepal Fund, please visit the Donate Now page of Parasol's website and select the Changing Lives Nepal Fund from the drop-down menu.