Stef Reid at Anandaban

Stuart in Nepal – Paralympian Days

My time in Nepal was far too short. I would have loved to stay longer, to spend more time in the amazing scenery and with the wonderful people I have met. It’s the middle of the night (early Tuesday morning) in Doha airport and I’m writing this as part of my strategy for staying awake during the 7 or 8 hours between flights (3rd coffee has just been delivered, which will also help).

The last few days have been great. It has been a joy and a blessing to be on this trip and to share Stef’s love and deep interest in helping people disabled or otherwise disadvantaged because of leprosy. (And yes, I did spend a lot of the time being told to keep out of shot).

Travelling out to meet a lady affected by leprosy in her home we needed a special escort – not for safety but because the house was so remote, perched on a steep hillside just below the road, that even the TLM driver would never have found it.

Jyoti had tears in her eyes talking about her fears when she was first diagnosed with leprosy and about the help that she has received from Anandaban Hospital.

At the hospital itself, as well as meeting patients Stef was fitted for a prosthetic leg “Nepali-style”. She was very complimentary about the hospital team’s work and I can’t wait to see how she gets on later in the week when she goes back to try on what they’ve made. I think that’s planned for Thursday – watch out for the video on our Facebook page.

I have loved every minute of this trip, it’s been very different to some of the trips I’ve made previously but I’ve come away with some very powerful lessons:

Your support for The Leprosy Mission’s work in Nepal is truly life-changing. Your gifts and prayers are more powerful than you may ever know. Remember that if you give to the Heal Nepal campaign, thanks to UK Aid Match your gifts will be doubled by the UK government.

It is incredibly rewarding to slow down slightly and try, despite the language barrier, to get to know the people we meet on these visits better as people – not just to get the details of their stories that we need so that we can tell you about them in letters, magazines or when we visit your church.

I can’t wait another 13 years before going back to Nepal – it’s jumped back to the top of my list of favourite places I’ve been.

I would love to come and tell your church about how you can help people affected by leprosy in Nepal, and around the world. Contact the office and we can get a date in the diary.

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26th Feb 2019

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Opinions are the authors own and not necessarily those of The Leprosy Mission Scotland.