Women work to promote tourism

Solukhumbu, March 10

When the small village of Khunde, which is closely located to Khumjung Valley, saw a drastic decline in tourists, women in the village decided to take matters into their own hands.

With a desire to bring in more tourists, the women of Khunde have ramped up efforts to build a better infrastructure that supports tourism.

Located in the Khumbu region, Khunde does not bring in as many tourists as its neighbouring villages in the area.

In an effort to pull up their economy, local women have constructed a helipad and a view tower on their own hoping for tourists to stay and explore their village.

"Many visit Khumbu region every year, but hardly anyone know about our village," said Yangji Sherpa, who heads a local women's group, adding they have no support from the government or non-government organisation.

Only potato and buckwheat are produced in Khunde and it has some hotels opened targeting tourists. But hotel business is yet to boom due to low number of tourist arrivals.

Almost all women here are involved in agriculture and livestock farming while men work as trekking guides outside the village. Women are supposed to address the problems of the village, according to group's member Da Doma Sherpa. The helipad constructed by Khunde women has helped in bringing patients suffering from altitude sickness to the Khunde Hospital based in the village, she said.