Chanda Chaudhary: A Terai girl bringing engineering knowledge to the hills
Chanda Chaudhary’s typical morning begins with an uphill trek to Dahaki from Kurintar. It was difficult at first for a girl from western Terai to walk uphill for one and half hour, but she has come to enjoy the early morning trek. She is currently working as site manager in the Hamro Ghar Project for shelter construction works in the Chepang community of Dahaki.
While working in the construction sites, she thoroughly orients the workers on the process and technical standards to build resilient shelters. When needed she even gets her hand dirty so as to clearly demonstrate the work. She is very much at ease with the community and often spends time learning about them. During these interactions, she feels that they still lack adequate knowledge on building strong and resilient shelters. It makes her feel more responsible towards executing her work duties so to attain the requisite standards in construction and make the locals aware on building safe and resilient homes.
Her task has not been easy, people often skip rules and standards in construction to save money where possible. On the other hand, there are a few households who have missed the government’s grants and thus require more support from the HAMRO GHAR project. There is also a distinct absence of education and sanitation in the Chepang community. Chanda Chaudhary, herself being a girl from an underprivileged community supports the Chepang, one of the most marginalized and indigenous community to build safe shelters and hopes of a better future.