Living conditions in these remote mountain regions are incredibly harsh, with 9 months of heavy snowfall. Temperatures regularly dip far below freezing. Food and drinking water are often in short supply. Education and medical facilities are practically non-existent. Women, especially, face many difficulties.
To address these problems, students study math, health and hygiene, English, and Hindi, as well as Tibetan language, Buddhist philosophy, and meditation. After completing their studies, these women will serve as teachers, health care workers, community workers, and mentors to others. They will create similar study programs in their homelands and other needy areas. They will be able to help their people and help revitalize their special cultural heritage.
These study programs are rapidly changing perceptions of women throughout the Himalayas. The study programs are also helping preserve and revive Buddhist culture in areas where it is declining dangerously due to secularism, cultural encroachment, and economic hardship. Students from diverse nationalities and ethnic backgrounds develop a strong sense of community and purpose. Many more young women have applied for admission, but must wait until more facilities can be built.
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