Bhutan Monk Project was started by a Bhutanese and German couple together with close friends. We are an official German Charity Association and we support children and youth in the Kingdom of Bhutan, especially monks and nuns. Our work has three main pillars:
1. Support in a materialistic sense:
Clothes, food, mattresses, beds, blankets, shoes, robes.. whatever is needed in the monasteries and nunneries. The goal is to increase the living standard of the often very poor monks and nuns.
2. Medical support and medical education:
Checks up and medical support in small monasteries is provided by our European doctor teams in those remote places, where public health care is not easily available. Basic trainings on hygienic standards, first aid and dental care are our main focus. Our doctors and nurses are traveling to Bhutan and offering their time and expertise for free. Their travel costs are paid by private persons.
3. Teachers trainings:
European teachers train teachers and monks wherever more knowledge or support is needed, for example in English language skills.
All our effort is meant to become a sustainable long term project and support. We start step by step, learning from our Bhutanese partners and adjusting our support to their needs.
HOW WE WORK is with local partners. Being mostly western people, we respect that coming from the outside we might not understand the needs and cultural setting properly. So compassion without wisdom might cause more trouble than it brings benefit. For this reason we work with local partners, mainly Lamas, Khenpos and Rinpoches, as well as the concerned Ministries, eg. the Ministry of Health. All projects are coordinated with and approved by the Central Monastic Body. With their help we identify monasteries and nunneries where support is needed and wanted. We visits the places, most of them far away from tourist routes and with bad infrastructure. With the resident Lama and the monks we analyse what is needed most. Following their suggestions we arrange for the needed goods to be bought and we pay the bills. So in general we do not just send money but we identify what it will be used for. In the same way the places where the doctors go are identified. Being in Bhutan many times a year, we frequently visit those holy places, talk to the people concerned and watch the results. After an evaluation with the locals and the Central Monastic Body we start the next support. Our goal is to build reliable and sustainable relations with the supported monks and nuns.
One of our cooperation partners is the Bhutan Youth Development Fund of Her Majesty Queen Mother Ashi Tshering Pem Wangchuck. Here we support with close cooperation – for example in the International Advisory Council, as well as with financial support for special projects like “Sponsor a Monk”.
Every donor can of course come with us to the monasteries we work with and get into touch with the people on the spot, seeing the results of his or her donations!