Welcome to this very special virtual field trip.

Register online

Very soon, you’ll be going behind the scenes of a WaterAid project and discovering more about how we harness technology to overcome challenges, our pandemic response, and the impact climate change is having on water, sanitation and hygiene.

You’ll meet the people we work alongside and immerse yourself in their lives, and hear from some of the team involved in our work. They'll be online during our visit, ready to answer any questions in the live chat.

Your tour starts at 2pm on Wednesday 24 November. In the meantime, and to prepare you for your visit, we’ve put together some background on the communities, the work, and what to expect on the day.

The Place

We'll be visiting Dolakha, located 135km north east of Kathmandu. It's home to one of Nepal’s most marginalised ethnic groups, the Thami community. A hill tribe of just 30,000 people, they are often overlooked by development projects.

Our work in Dolakha is focused on two municipalities – or boroughs – called Kalinchowk and Shailung. For your tour, we’ll be taking you to Kalinchowk, a lush, green area nested high in the mountains of northern Dolakha, and the picturesque destination for thousands of pilgrims and trekkers each year. Meanwhile, Shailung lies in the south and is known locally as the ‘land of a hundred hills’.

It's clear why people make their way to these areas every year: the breath-taking sights, the feeling of peace, and the wonderfully kind and spirited locals – locals who love their home, the beauty of which they never take for granted.

Our itinery

We'll be welcomed to Nepal by Shivani Chemjong, WaterAid Nepal's Communications and Campaign Lead. She introduces our guide for this tour: Mani Karmacharya, Voices from the Field Officer.

bishnumaya shrestha-77 smiling as she takes a photo with wateraids mani karmacharya
Mani alongside community member Bishnumaya Shrestha in Kalinchowk, Dolakha.
Image: WaterAid/ Mani Karmacharya

Set out across the mountainous terrain, home of the Himalayas, and catch a glimpse of the country, communities and landscape. Arrive in Dolakha, 135km north east of Kathmandu, to hear about our project work there.

Lapilang, Kalinchowk, Dolakha, Nepal
The mountainous terrain of the Dolakha region
Image: WaterAid/ Mani Karmacharya

See first-hand the impact of a major landslide affecting the community at Shilaphare. Meet the community leaders dealing with the disaster, and hear their hopes for the future.

The massive landslide which affected the project construction at Lapilang, Kalinchowk, Dolakha, Nepal, Sep 2020.
The landslide left huge destruction in its wake.
Image: WaterAid/ Mani Karmacharya

Find out more about the impact of COVID-19 on our project work, and what our teams have been doing to respond.

Laxmi Subedi, social mobiliser, sharing her knowledge on COVID-19 and the essential safety measures to the community, Shailung, Dolakha Nepal, July 2020.
Laxmi Subedi, social mobiliser, sharing her knowledge on COVID-19 and the essential safety measures with community members in Shailung, July 2020.
Image: WaterAid/ Laxmi Subedi

Catch a glimpse of the tech we use in this challenging environment, and hear stories of hope for a future with a reliable supply of clean water.

Workers constructing a tapstand as part of the project in Shailung.
Workers constructing a tapstand as part of the project in Shailung.
Image: WaterAid/ Mani Karmacharya

How to join

Your tour starts at 2pm on Wednesday 24 November, and will last around half an hour.

Register online

If you have any questions on how to join, or experience any difficulties, please get in touch with us by emailing [email protected].

About the project

Discover more about Foundations for the Future, our project working to bring reliable sources of clean water to communities in Dolakha.

About the project
Image: WaterAid/ Mani Karmacharya

A lack of clean water in areas like Dolakha is holding communities here back – preventing children from getting an education and standing in the way of people who want to earn a better living.

Two and a half years ago, with the significant support of people like you, we embarked on an ambitious project to improve access to clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene for communities in this remote region.

Here’s a little more background to help you explore ahead of our virtual tour:

  • Carrying water can take several hours, leaving less and less time for farming, business or school.
  • Steep, narrow mountain paths can cause serious injuries.
  • Some water sources are dirty or not working properly, which can lead to sickness. 
  • This area is vulnerable to natural hazards – such as earthquakes and landslides – which affect water sources.
  • Changing weather patterns associated with climate change mean communities face more uncertainty as they experience more frequent or extreme episodes of flooding or drought.
  • Build 15 new water supply systems to reach 6,000 people with clean water. 
  • Use gravity flow systems, a low-cost way to tap reliable mountain springs and pipe water to people’s homes.
  • Support schools to improve their water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) facilities, setting up WASH Clubs to promote good hygiene habits and empowering young people to share what they have learned with each other and the community.
  • Work closely with the community, focusing on marginalised groups, women, and people with disabilities to make sure they are included in the decision-making process.
  • Lobby local government to prioritise WASH in their annual plans and in schools. We will encourage the success of this work to be rolled out to more communities.

Each point on the timeline explains more about our progress to date – and the challenges we've overcome together:

Progress so far

Despite all the recent challenges, we're making steady progress to bring clean, reliable and accessible water to mountain communities in Dolakha.

NB: All progress relates to the most recent figures available, up to September 2020.

Stories from Dolakha

From the individuals experiencing long and often perilous journeys to collect water, to the community leaders helping shape the project, discover some of the stories from the region:

WaterAid in Nepal

Explore some more of our work across the country: from improving hygiene and access to water in healthcare facilities, to empowering girls to challenge harmful taboos.

Find out more


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