The goal of our capital projects is to improve the commuity for the children and expand our ability to help more children. We have numerous long-term capital needs. If you are interested in making a major donation toward a specific project, please contact us. Our most urgent needs are listed in Red.
Family Housing – estimated cost: $300,000 USD
The plan is for a duplex house for a total of 40 children. The children currently live in one of four “family houses.” The families are temporarily housed in rooms intended for classrooms in the school buildings. Each family has their own room set up like a dormitory, where the Ama la and her 20 children of mixed ages and genders all stay together in the same room. Family houses are not just homes where children live when they are not in class, they play an integral role in the social and emotional development of the children.
The children are growing and we plan to add more students in the future, making the current housing insufficient. We need to provide privacy so older boys and girls can maintain their modesty. It is vital that we build better housing for our families, including the ama las or couples who care for them.
New family houses will free up classrooms required for the upper grade levels and for additional students. We would like to begin this building project as soon as possible.
School Annex – estimated cost: $100,000 USD
Now that our oldest children are about to enter class 10, we need to meet the high school academic requirements. This building will provide space for science laboratories, group projects, computer research, individual study, and practice space for performances, and recreation.
Workshop – estimated cost: $100,000 USD
Our experiential education program teaches practical skills needed in this region. A workshop is needed for things like masonry, carpentry, welding, wood working and traditional arts. The workshop will also be used for post-graduate vocational training.
Cultural Preservation Needs
Dance Costumes – $5,000 USD
We teach traditional Monpa and Tibetan dance as a part of our cultural preservation program. Custom, handmade costumes are very expensive. We have relied on renting or borrowing costumes from other schools, but our dancers have now achieved such recognition that this is no longer possible. Thanks to the children’s crowd-source fundraising initiative last year, we have purchased Snow Lion Dance, Yak Dance and some of the Monpa and Tibetan costumes. We still need a few more traditional Monpa and Tibetan costumes.
Food & Gardening Needs
Kitchen/Dining Area Construction – estimated cost $150,000 USD
As the children grow in size and the population increases, we need to expand the family kitchen/dining area to accommodate everyone comfortably. We also need to equip the kitchen with a refrigerator and freezer which we do not currently own at the community.
Clinic – estimated cost $50,000 USD
Currently the clinic, serving only the Jhamtse Gatsal community, occupies one large room in the school building that is desperately needed for education. A clinic that can also serve villagers can be constructed for modest cost by adding a story to a staff house near the entrance to the campus. The clinic, which will be accessible to people who cannot manage steps, will have a reception area/office, examination and treatment rooms, an infirmary with space for several patients, and a living area for a healthcare professional.
Sustainable Living Needs
Solar Power Project – $5,000 USD
Power is often unreliable in this area, sometimes as little as an hour or two a day. To provide a modern education it requires regular power for lights, computers, internet communication, refrigeration, etc. We currently provide nearly a third of our power from solar. Since grid power is uncertain, it is a practical necessity to become self-sufficient and not just a “green” ideal. The purchase of additional solar panels and related parts is required to meet our power needs.
School Bus – $30,000 USD
Jhamtse Gatsal is located on an isolated ridge, about two-hours’ drive from the closest town of Tawang, a town of about 10,000 inhabitants. Our children come from small villages and most are quite unfamiliar with the everyday business and busyness of life in even this small town. We are currently unable to take them to Tawang, or on other field trips to broaden their horizons. A school bus for 36 children, with reinforced suspension to handle our rough roads, will enable us to take the children to Tawang to become accustomed to making small purchases, and to important cultural and historic sites, public events, and sites of interest to their studies. Older children, many of whom expect to attend universities in large cities with ethnically different populations, completely removed from the protection of Jhamtse Gatsal, will have the opportunity to visit and become comfortable in cities such as Tezpur in Assam.