Main problems faced by children in Nepal
Poverty: Almost half the population of Nepal lives below the poverty line and cannot fulfill their families’ needs. Life for these people deteriorates daily in the face of unrest in the streets, inflation, etc. As victims of poverty, the children are in their hour of greatest need. They fight a battle for their lives every day, as their fundamental rights are not fulfilled.
Health: The Nepalese health care system has a serious lack of appropriate materials and competent workers. Health indicators reflect this: more than 45% of children perish before the age of 5, and 21% of young Nepalese are underweight. Children’s health is particularly vulnerable, and they tend to suffer from malnutrition and diabetes. The Ministry of Health, supported by many other organizations, has set up awareness programs, principally directed at mothers, to teach them to recognize the symptoms of childhood illnesses.
Education: Education in Nepal is free and mandatory between the ages of 6 and 11. This is not enforced, however, and many children leave school before their 11th birthday. Because of this, only 84% of Nepalese children attend school. Large gaps exist between the attendance of girls and boys, due to traditions which dictate the early marriage of young girls and the favoring of boys’ education. The educational system is also in a poor state. Factors such as mediocre teachers and a lack of buildings, materials, and personnel, all hinder the chances of attending school.
Child labour: Child labour is a large black mark upon Nepalese society. Over 25% of girls work every day, as opposed to 17% of boys, since the latter represent a family’s future and are thus usually enrolled in school. Those who work do so to support their families’ needs, and they work in very dangerous conditions.
Their duties vary by the job: they could be junk dealers, sweatshop workers, housekeepers, or weavers. They become vulnerable to many illnesses through their jobs.
Child trafficking: Child trafficking is altogether too present in Nepal, mostly because there is not yet a law against pedophilia. Many girls are torn from their families by traffickers because of this. Some will even decide to seek out traffickers themselves, looking for a better life. Once they arrive in cities, the girls are sent to brothels. Some may be as young as seven. This sexual treatment of young girls has hugely negative consequences on their future. Trauma, illness, and psychological disorders become their fate, due to the abuse they have suffered.
Child marriage: The legal age for marriage is 18 for girls and 21 for boys. However, this law is not always respected: 51% of girls are married before that age.
In many communities, such as the Newar community in Kathmandu, it is common for children to be promised to one another without any say in their own union. There are also some rites of marriage that can traumatize young girls, which many communities still perform.
Discrimination: The country of Nepal is composed of many communities and over 90 Sino-Tibetan languages. The official language is Nepali, though, usually followed by English. Because of this, many communities cannot make themselves publicly understood, or send their children to school.
In distant rural regions, primary schooling is usually given in Nepali, which many children cannot understand. This prevents them from attending school at either the primary or the secondary level.
Right to identity: Nepal, whether a country or a conglomeration of multiple communities, does not yet have an effective government or judicial system. More than 30% of children, for example, are not officially registered with Nepalese authorities. This loophole causes serious problems for their lives.
These children are invisible to society’s eyes, and they cannot take advantage of their rights, including education and health care.
Educating rate in Nepal
There are both private and state-owned schools in Nepal. The state schools are indeed cheaper, but the classes frequently have 50 or more pupils and the teachers are lacking proper training. These state-run schools are eligible for limited funding through the government, and this results in less than ideal teaching and learning environments. Conversely, only children from affluent families can attend the private schools that offer better and ideal learning environments. Moreover, families who have too little or no money are simply unable to attend school. Ultimately, this vast discrepancy in learning environments furthers the gap between the affluent and the poor. Thus, Moonlight strives to offer a viable alternative to the governments schools and expensive private schools.
Challenges for Nepalese Children
Nepal is renowned for its natural beauty, spectacular scenery and cultural landmarks. With Mount Everest on the northern border, and the birthplace of Buddha to the south, Nepal is undoubtedly a charming and exotic destination. However, many people are unaware that Nepal is also the poorest country in Asia with a high percentage of the population living in abject poverty.
Children from the most vulnerable communities, including those from the lowest castes and tribes, from religious minority groups and girls, don’t have an equal chance to succeed. Too many children are stunted due to severe malnutrition. Child marriage, child labor and poverty are persistent challenges.
Almost half of Nepal’s young female population is married before they are 18 years old, and it is estimated that every year, from 15,000-20,000 Nepalese girls (42% of which are minors) are trafficked into the international sex slavery industry.
Nepal is an agricultural country. More than 66 percent people depend on agriculture. Farmers are engaged in their field just half of the year. Rest of the time, they remain inactive. They need more manpower to work in the field. To fulfill their workforce, they give birth many children. The rural area women are very backward. They are only confined to household activities but not allowed to work outside. Only the father is the breadwinner in the family, the death or absence of whom affects the overall economic condition of the family. Mothers can not support the family. Under such circumstances, children are employed in some other people’s houses which deprive them of receiving formal education.
When the children don’t get proper love, affection and care from the parents, they look for other ways to survive. Consequently, they often resort to street for survival. They forget everything and extend their hands to get some food to be alive. But the little money given by some kind people is not enough for them to survive.
Almost all street children are addicted to glue sniffing because of hunger and influence of friends. About 95 percent of street children are using glue and it does not take much to introduce the habit to remaining 5 percent. It is said some street children use as many as 15 tubes a day (one tube of dendrite can be used four to five times) and many use it as a substitute for regular meals.
Child labor remains a major challenge for Nepalese society. Over a million Nepalese children are working as child labor in Nepal, with 127,000 involve in the worst forms. Children between the age of 5 and 14 years are working as laborers in the agriculture farms, tea garden, fruit fields, brick kilns, hotels and private households.
Nepal has the lowest literacy rate in Asia and one of the highest child mortality rates in the world. Infrastructure is not only highly inadequate, but also nonexistent in remote mountain villages where people
Nepal, the landlocked multiethnic, multilingual, multi-religious country, is situated north of India in the Himalayas, in the region where, about 40 to 50 million years ago, the Indian subcontinent has crashed into Asia. Because of that accident, Nepal has some of the world’s highest mountains including Sagarmatha (Mt. Everest, 8848m, which it shares with Tibet (by now a province of China). The highest mountain on Earth is towering above populated valleys and forested plains.
Somewhere here in the Kapilavastu district, there is a place called Lumbini where in about 500 B.C.E. Queen Mayadevi is said to have given birth to Siddhartha Gautama, better known as Buddha.
Nepal can be divided broadly into three ecological zones: the lowland, the midland and the highland.
The altitude of the Himalayan Region (the highland) ranges between 4877 m – 8848 m, It includes 8 of the highest 14 summits in the world, which exceed altitude of 8000 meters including Mount Everest.
The mountain region accounts for about 64 percent of total land area, which is formed by the Mahabharat range that soars up to 4877 m and the lower Churia range.
The lowland Terai, the flat river plain of the Ganges with a belt of marshy grasslands, savannas, and forests, occupies about 17 percent of the total land area of the country.
Border countries: China (Tibet Autonomous Region (Xizang), India
Other countries close to Nepal: Bhutan, Bangladesh
The nation-state of Nepal was the creation of King Prithvi Narayan Shah. The ruler of the small principality of Gorkha, campaigned to unite the various kingdoms that dotted the geographical area defined by modern Nepal. The conquest of Kathmandu Valley, which took a total of ten years of planning, siege and diplomacy, was the highlight of his conquests (1769). The work begun by King Prithvi Narayan was continued by his descendants. At the greatest extent the Nepali (then known as the Gorkhali) Empire covered an area that was at least a third more than its present confines.
Nepal, the nation-state of dismissed governments.
Nepal, the world’s only Hindu monarchy, was controlled by a hereditary prime ministership until 1951. The nation’s first election was held in 1959, but in 1960, King Mahendra dismissed the cabinet, dissolved parliament, and banned political parties.
A 1962 constitution created a nonparty panchayat (council) system of government.
After a 1980 referendum approved a modified version of the panchayat system, direct parliamentary elections were held in 1981.
A dispute with India led to India’s closing of most border crossings from March 1989 to July 1990, and the resultant economic crisis fueled demands for political reform. After months of violence, King Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev dissolved parliament. The opposition formed an interim government in April 1990, and a new constitution creating a constitutional monarchy and a bicameral legislature became effective on 9 Nov. 1990. Multiparty legislative elections held in May 1991 were won by the centrist Nepali Congress party; the Communists became the leading opposition party.
Mid-term elections in November 1994, which were called after the government lost a parliamentary vote, resulted in a hung parliament and the communists, who emerged as the single largest party, formed a minority government.
In January 2005 Nepal’s King Gyanendra sacked Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, dismissed the country’s government, assumed power himself and declared a state of emergency.
King Gyanendra’s direct rule ended under public pressure in April 2006, the monarchy was abolished in May 2008 and a Maoist-dominated government took office in August
Nationality: noun: Nepalese (singular and plural), adjective: Nepalese or Nepali.
Population: 31 million (2016)
Refugee Population: Bhutanese (94 000), Tibetans (20 000 approx.)
Ethnic Groups: sixty ethnic groups, major groups are Sherpas, Kirats or Limbus, Rais, Magars, Newars, Tamangs, Gurungs, the Bahuns and Chhetries and the Tharus the inhabitants of the Tarai.
Religions: Hinduism (predominant 86%), Buddhism 8%, Tibetan Lamaism (Bon)
Languages: Nepali (official and lingua franca of the country), sixty ethnic groups, who speak seventy different dialects and eleven major languages like Tibeto-Burman, Lhotsamkha, Nepalbhasa, Tamang languages.
Local Time = UTC + 5:45h
Country Calling Code: +977
Capital City: Kathmandu (pop 1.5 million)
Biratnagar, Patan, Pokhara, Birganj, Dharan, Nepalganj.
Location: Southern Asia, between China and India
Area: 147,181 km² (56,826 sq.mi.)
Terrain: Tarai or flat river plain of the Ganges in south, central hill region, rugged Himalayas in north.
Climate: The climate in Nepal varies with elevation, tropical in the lower southern part Tarai, mid-hills alpine and the high mountains polar; elevation ranges from 90 to 8848 meters.
Natural resources: Quartz, water, timber, hydropower, scenic beauty, small deposits of lignite, copper, cobalt, iron ore.
Agriculture products: Rice, corn, wheat, sugarcane, root crops; milk, water buffalo meat.
Industries: Tourism, carpet, textile; small rice, jute, sugar, and oilseed mills; cigarette; cement and brick production.
Exports – commodities: clothing, pulses, carpets, textiles, juice, jute goods
Exports – partners: India 61.3%, USA 9.4% (2015)
Imports – commodities: petroleum products, machinery and equipment, gold, electrical goods, medicine
Imports – partners: India 61.5%, China 15.4% (2015)
Currency: Nepalese Rupee (NPR)