709 foreign volunteers in ValleyNearly half of the foreign volunteers currently working in Nepal are deployed in the three districts of Kathmandu Valley as the country lacks a clear guideline on their mobilisation.
Nearly half of the foreign volunteers currently working in Nepal are deployed in the three districts of Kathmandu Valley as the country lacks a clear guideline on their mobilisation.
According to data on foreign volunteers collected by the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration (MoFAGA) in July, as many as 709 volunteers are currently working in Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Lalitpur districts while their total number nationwide is 1,426. This means 49.71 percent volunteers are based in the Capital.
The highest volunteer concentration is in Kathmandu district (499), followed by Bhaktapur (110) and Lalitpur (100). Other top 10 districts with high foreign volunteer mobilisation include Kaski, Syangja, Chitwan, Kavre, Nuwakot, Parbat and Lamjung.
According to the MoFAGA, the largest number of volunteers are working at the Korea-Nepal Friendship Hospital, Bhaktapur (28), followed by Vishwa Bhasa Campus, Tribhuvan University (18); Bir Hospital (13); District Education Office, Nuwakot (12) and Institute of Engineering (Western Regional Campus), TU (11).
The government has the policy of seeking foreign volunteers’ service in the areas where Nepal does not have adequate talent and technical expertise. The government receives their services in the form of technical assistance from donor agencies and volunteer organisations.
As per the Development Cooperation Policy-2014, the government should identify priority areas and request donors and organisations to send their volunteers.
Dinesh Thapaliya, secretary at the MoFAGA, said volunteer mobilisation had sailed against the Development Cooperation Policy. “Currently, volunteer organisations first approach local governments offering their services instead of the local governments demanding those services first. This caused the uneven distribution of foreign volunteers,” he said.
The government, which is drafting a working procedure on volunteer mobilisation, aims to amend the existing system. “We’ll have a provision in the working procedure that the local government will identify areas where the service of foreign volunteers will be required. The federal government will mobilise them [on that basis],” said Thapaliya.
The major areas that the government aims to mobilise foreign volunteers in include engineering, environmental management, information and communication technology, education, health, urban planning, solid waste management, enterprise development and disaster risk management.
Japan tops the list of the countries sending the highest number of volunteers. As many as 616 Japanese are volunteering in Nepal, followed by South Korea (392) and the United States (200).
Top 10 districts with high volunteers
Kaski (Pokhara) 95