Benefiting 80 Bon families
Classes to 11th level
The Bon are a Tibetan minority ethnic group who fled to India when the Chinese invaded Tibet in 1959 and in 1968, the Bon established a community in Dolanji, India on donated land. Today the Bon community is settled and has an orphanage, a children’s hostel, school (to the 11th class), health center, and community farm.
CHI has worked on projects with the Bon community leaders including fundraising for water storage tanks, a storage building, health facility equipment, a drinking water well, and public toilets. CHI has also provided funds to purchase a milk cow and improve water quality and living conditions.
The primary focus of CHI's fundraising work is to support the children of Menri. Westerners are sometimes surprised that a monastery community includes children. Traditionally, Tibetan parents sent children to monasteries and nunneries for monastic training; they were also places of refuge and education. Today, as always, Bon families in Tibet, Nepal, and other borderlands of India want security and education for their children. Many families are poor, many children are orphaned or semi-orphaned, and their relatives are unable to provide for them. They turn to Menri Monastery and Redna Menling Nunnery for the children's care and education. Relatives and paid guides make arduous journeys to Menri with groups of children whom they entrust to the care of His Holiness Menri Trizin. No child is turned away, yet beyond the generosity of donors, the monastery has few resources for these children.
News from Toc Dunlap - I visited both the boys and the girls hostels at Menri Monastery in Dholanji. There are now 204 boys and 45 girls in the hostels. As the number of children has increased, the hostels have grown in size. The boys hostels now has a new wing for storage of clothes, bedding and food and also has three extra rooms for art, extracurricular classes as well as office space for the monks looking after the students. The play area, which needed to be reconstructed after heavy rains caused part of the play area to slide down the hill, is now under use by the boys and a basketball court has been added.
In the hostel for girls, rooms are now completed and a railing has been added to the staircase for safety reasons. Anticipating even more students, a new addition for rooms is under construction.
The school for the children now has an 11th grade class which means that students can now complete the 11th grade without having to go to another city and pay tuition. There are presently 30 students in the 11th grade class.