Conversations that Matter: Life Lessons from Nepal

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Tue 04May
Virtual Event

Resilience and hope in the High Himalayas

Facilitator: Zara Balfour and Phil Briggs

Event time: Tue 4th May 2021 at 7:00pm - Tue 4th May 2021 at 8:00pm

Conversations That Matter Series

Join us for a new episode on our Conversation that Matter series that will take you to faraway places, consider a reality outside your own, and that will fill you with amazement for the human spirit’s extraordinary capacity to survive and thrive in difficult circumstances with meagre resources.

In this new Conversations that Matter episode, we travel to the Himalayas. Himalayan families face an impossible choice for their children: with family but without future or educated but without family.​

Children are often sent away by their parents when they are just 4 years old, to school in the capital city of Kathmandu, in the hope that education will give them a better chance in life. For 12 years they live and study at school, receiving free education, but cannot see or speak to their parents, due to the remoteness of their villages. Upon graduation, aged 16, non-profit organisation Snowland Journeys facilitates the reintegration of these young people with their families, communities and culture.

The children’s journey home is an arduous trek across mountains that takes them to the highest inhabited place on the planet; a faraway, off-grid land where the way of life has not changed for thousands of years. The young children who left their parents many years ago will return to their villages as teenagers who have been brought up in a world of mobile phones, social media and most modern conveniences. By going home and seeing life in the villages, the young people gain an understanding of why they were sent away, the sacrifice their parents had to make, and realise they are deeply loved.

The stories of these children and young people teach incredible perspective, hope and heart: the three young protagonists have spent their lives from age 4 until age 16 living and studying inside the Snowland School grounds, without contact with their families.

“They have emerged as 16-year-old teenagers with all the qualities and strength we need: patience, gratitude for the life they have, and determination to make the most of the education for which they have made such a sacrifice.”

However they have emerged as 16-year-old teenagers with all the qualities and strength we need: patience, gratitude for the life they have, and determination to make the most of the education for which they have made such a sacrifice.
This conversation offers a view of a remote, ancient place, where the way of life has remained unchanged for the past 2,000 years and explores the human spirit’s extraordinary capacity to survive and thrive in difficult circumstances with meagre resources.

Conversations That Matter

Hawkwood is a place to grow, a place to create, and a place for conversation. Join us for this talk exploring the human spirit’s extraordinary capacity to survive and thrive in difficult circumstances with meagre resources with Zara Balfour and Phil Briggs. We commit to opening up spaces for people to come together and have Conversations That Matter. This explorative and widely inclusive ground is to share, connect and speak from or for our rapidly changing world. Click to see our full series.

The Children of Snowland: A Documentary

Practical Information

The event will be held in real-time with the tutor via the Zoom platform and streamed live and published to our Facebook and YouTube.

Sign up to the Zoom platform is free. You will need a laptop, computer, tablet, or smartphone connected to the internet.

Date & Time

4th May 2021 19:00 – 20:00 BST. One hour conversation plus Q&A.

How to Register

Register by clicking on the “Going” button above to confirm your attendance and to receive the Zoom link.

Gift Economy

This talk will be delivered via Zoom and is brought through gift economy (donations). Please donate, & be sure to add the note “HIMALAYAS” to the notes. Thank you!  

Donate Here

Want to learn more about gift economy and how it works? Read our latest blog.

Snowland Journeys

Joining the conversation are Zara Balfour and Phil Briggs, the Directors of Snowland Journeys, a non-profit organisation that facilitates the reintegration of Himalayan children, helps them maintain contact with their families, alongside their right to education, and develops livelihoods for mountain communities.

Snowland Journeys also provides educational experiences and mental health support for young people in the UK, as well as regenerative travel expeditions.

Visit Tutor's Website
Katie Lloyd-Nun Hawkwood

Katie Lloyd-Nunn

Katie is a mover, writer, editor and curator. She has worked at Hawkwood since 2004 developing the programme in parallel with her varied interests. Hawkwood CFT celebrates authentic communication, leadership, spirituality, Nature, music, silence, embodiment and community. Prior to finding her place in Stroud, she lived 10 years in the Midwest US before moving to Findhorn community from 1990-2000. Now semi-retired, her own brand of youthful eldership is coming to the fore.