There is something very special about the Nepali people. History has etched lines on their faces and hope shines timidly in their eyes. They have suffered. Yet, there is a gentleness about them, or is it their reception to kindness that makes them gentle? Any distrust coming from a long history of being lied to by any government that should but does not help its people out. Defeated but not destroyed. They still smile with their eyes and they want to know "What is your country?" They are a village people wrapped up in long woven blankets with twisted braids and big beaded necklaces. The old men wear these funny tilted hats that make them look oddly official. They walk with their hand behind their backs. And they walk and they walk and they walk. Nepal is a very rural country with high mountains and low desert lands. Remote villages are connected via small paths for people, porters or yaks. It's completely land-locked and China (above) and India (below) seem mostly interested only in what Nepal might have for them. China shoves the landless Tibetans in to Nepal, India comes in to traffic humans. Other than tourism, the resources are few so no one wants to invest, except for human relief organizations—some good, some equally corrupt. And so Nepal suffers. But as it goes with most impoverished countries, those that suffer are those that seem to complain the least. They just keep their shoulders to the grind. Empty promises don't hold water, you learn that quickly. Instability, community, the earth. Those are their constants, and these are their faces.
- TANJA CESH
- I went on a journey throughout India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Cambodia and Thailand observing organizations that are working specifically with marginalized women and children who have been or are at-risk of being trafficked as sex workers or bonded laborers. While this blog is expository, its intent is to create awareness as well as provide real-life examples of solutions! Hence, the name of the blog. Beauty is lost in these dark places. Yet, there are people hard at work redeeming human lives. Many programs create vocational training to provide income-generation for the participants. These organizations are creating beautiful products that are emerging in the western marketplace. They are shop-worthy for their uniqueness, but also because they are creating second-chances for women who are lifting themselves out of poverty. We who "have" can make a big impact in the world simply by how we choose to spend our money. Also, we can donate to organizations that are on the field, down the alleys and in the trenches. This work is not easy but the pay-off is great. Lives are redeemed and beauty is found.