Marianne first met little Parbat during her first visit to Maiti Nepal´s shelters in Kathmandu, Nepal in November 2017. A lot has happened since then and this is a story worth sharing!
Parbat´s start in life was a sad one; he was found only a few days old, wrapped in some blankets lying all alone on a big busy road in the centre of Kathmandu. Police picked up the abandoned baby and brought him to Maiti Nepal for safety. No parents ever came forward so Maiti Nepal became Parbat´s home.
As the little boy grew up in the shelters with the other children it became clear that he couldn´t hear and therefore also could not speak.
He is a very lively little boy that desperately wants to communicate and already on my first visit, I noticed that he often pushed his way past the other children to get my attention. He would poke me and poke me until I´d look at him, and then he would try to point and wave his arms around to make me understand what he wanted to say. It was so painful to watch him, locked inside himself with no way of expressing himself.
Maiti Nepal always tried to involve him in games and being part of activities, but they have no teachers suited for hearing impaired children and therefore his future was looking even more limited. Nepal is already a tough country to earn a living so people with handicaps have no easy future ahead of them.
Straight after my first visit in 2017, I found him a sponsor family here in Marbella, and thanks to their help we could in the end of 2018 enrol Parbat in a school for hearing impaired children outside Kathmandu. The school has a boarding option and due to the long drive, Parbat would go there every Monday and be picked up again Friday so that he could spend the weekends and school holidays back at Maiti Nepal.
In 2019, I visited Kavre Deaf School and had the privilege of seeing how good Parbat was doing there. He was so eager to learn and, being the youngest child in the school, the teachers gave him a lot of time and also a lot of the teaching was done in play by using drawings and images.
They showed me how to do the sign language for “I love you” and I went up to little Parbat for the first time able to tell him something that he could understand. His facial expression was priceless and the hug he gave me showed how important it is for him to communicate.
Since that visit, with covid-19 interrupting my planned visits in 2020 and 2021, I decided together with Anuradha Koirala, founder of Maiti Nepal, to explore the possibility of giving Parbat his hearing. After a year of medical exams and tests, the doctors came to the conclusion that Parbat could gain his hearing via a hearing implant surgery.
The government of Nepal promised to assist Maiti Nepal with a quarter of the surgery cost but the rest would need to be funded through a donor. The Maiti Homes team felt that this was exactly what Maiti Homes would like to give this Christmas!
After 3 months of preparation, the surgery took place on the 20th of December and early the following morning I received a whatsapp from Maiti Nepal with a photo of a tired Parbat and the good news that all had gone well.
Parbat will now heal and go through rehabilitation and slowly he should be able to hear and learn to use his new skills.
I will be travelling to Nepal from Marbella in February 2022 and can´t wait to see Parbat again. He has grown so much since I last visited.
Finally, for anyone that would like to help support the children of Maiti Nepal, a yearly sponsorship is 650€ and that pays the full budget for “your” sponsor child; being food, clothes, school, basic medical and living costs. Our support means the world to the children at Maiti Nepal.