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Paying a visit to Gandaki Boarding School

‘Education is the key to success’


 - Prabidhik KC and fellow Pestalozzi alumnus Aayush Aryal at GBS

Ever since I started working for Pestalozzi, education has fascinated me. What doors can it open, why is free access to it necessary and how would our communities be different if it was readily available? What education systems work best, what environments bring out the best in people... and so many more questions that were multiplied tenfold after my trip around the US visiting Pestalozzi alumni studying at a number of prestigious educational institutions.

And so whilst currently on a visit to Nepal, I was invited to visit Gandaki Boarding School, one of several schools in Nepal from which we have selected Pestalozzi scholars from in the past, all who have gone on to do amazing things. I jumped at the chance to visit, wanting to learn more about the backgrounds our students have come from and to understand a place which has helped to shape so many of them.

My tour guide for the morning was Prabidhik KC, a Pestalozzi alumnus who is currently studying Maths and Physics at Harvard on a full scholarship. I had heard him speak fondly and proudly of his educational experience there and it came as no surprise to me that we were received very warmly when we arrived.The teachers we met with were incredibly complimentary of Prabidhik from his time at the school, as well as fondly reminiscing other Pestalozzi students all noted for being incredibly bright, driven and well-rounded. Having visited Prabidhik at Harvard just two months ago, it felt worlds away to see him sat at his old desk or to have him show me the place where he used to study.

 - Prabidhik KC in old classroom

The visit to GBS was another way of cementing the importance of Pestalozzi's existence for me. Whilst GBS has provided an amazing foundation for Prabidhik and so many other students, their need and want for higher education and good resources after this is so important. From my understanding, GBS is one of the best school's in Nepal. The teachers are caring and the environment is one which encourages students to thrive. With this being said, the resources in even some of the best schools in developing countries are often not comparable to what is available in educational establishments in places such as the UK or USA.

To be able to see a place where many of our students began their education, gave me a greater understanding of Pestalozzi's purpose. If we continue to work with schools and charities across the world to help us to find the most deserving students, then we can give other young people the chance to go from a rural area of Nepal on to universities such as Harvard. Pestalozzi is the stepping stone to see this happen, and with the right support, it can continue to be for many years to come.

 - Nancy Anderson

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