KATHMANDU: His designs have won the hearts of many, and he has dressed world famous celebrities — fashion designer Prabal Gurung has carved his niche in the world fashion industry. But along with styling women from different walks of life — Sarah Jessica Parker, Lady Gaga, Oprah Winfrey to name a few — he always desired to empower women“through education”. Because the world-famous designer feels, “Change in the world happens through women.” So, with his sister Kumudini Shrestha and friends, Gurung established Shikshya Foundation Nepal in 2011. To realise the dreams of Gurung and his like-minded counterparts, the organisation has been helping to educate children in Nepal. And on April 21, the Foundation held a press meet at the Taragaon Museum, Bouddha, to mark its fifth anniversary. “We have been providing full scholarships — school/college fees, cost of uniform, books and stationeries, for students,” Gurung revealed during the press meet. The Foundation has been helping in the education of children in need — “from primary school through secondary school and higher education”. But how do they do that? The New York based Nepali fashion designer revealed, “We identify local partners at first. Then we collaborate with them to educate the children in country.” They have been working to educate children for different parts across the nation. After the press meet, a session was held to inform about the works of the Shikshya Foundation Nepal, where Gurung stated, “We are working to promote education in the country because education is both — freedom and empowerment — which will change Nepal into better Nepal.” Gurung also recalled the “harrowing experience” post earthquake. “It was heartbreaking to see the sights of such a destruction in Nepal. So, I remained in the United States collecting funds for the earthquake victims,” he clarified. And the raised funds have been used for rebuilding programmes in Dolakha, Rasuwa, Lalitpur, Sindhupalchowk, and Nuwakot districts. They have also partnered with Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology to establish community eye centres in Charikot, Dolakha, Chautara and Sindhupalchowk. The Foundation acknowledged the contributions of its local partners at the event. Gurung while wowing the world with designs, continues to work for the betterment of Nepal through education!
Education for change
The Himalayan Times
Published: 07:28 am Apr 22, 2016