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The Manakamana Fund
has been helping young Nepali village women to realize their dreams of higher education in the fields of health and education since 1990.
Our philosophy is to provide assistance for specific short degrees, at Nepali campuses outside of the Kathmandu Valley, to train young women in skills that will be useful in their villages. The degrees include:
--10+2 in Education, a 2-year degree which qualifies a girl to teach primary school
--ANM (Auxiliary Nurse-Midwife), an 18-month degree which qualifies her to work in a health post
--CMA (Certified Medical Assistant), a 15-month course which qualifies her to work in a health post
It is still extremely rare for a girl to finish 10th class in rural Nepal, and still rarer for her to pass the comprehensive government exam (the SLC, or School Leaving Certificate). Further education is beyond the reach of most of these young women: they face familial and societal pressure to marry and start having children, not to mention the expense of college. Most families, if they have any resources beyond subsistence, think only of educating sons, since daughters marry out of the family and are therefore not a good “investment”.