APRIL, 2001

Introduction

During the month of April, 2001, I traveled to Kathmandu, Nepal to help train and educate local automotive technicians. I have owned and operated DMV Clinic Car Care Center of Santa Cruz, CA since 1976, so I knew I had a lot to share about the industry. I represented the membership of iATN (International Automotive Technicians Network), which put the support of a lot of business owners behind me on my journey.

Jack Sparks

History

Overview
Join me as I make my way to Kathmandu, Nepal to meet with iATN member Irwin Bikram Chaudri and other Nepalese automotive technicians. I volunteered my time and expertise to help them get the training that is so scarce in their country.

History
Irwin's Auto Shop in KathmanduIt all started a few years ago, in a letter sent to the membership of iATN. Irwin Bikram Chaudri detailed the conditions of automotive repair in Nepal. Mr. Chaudri noted, "For example, a full engine tune-up for a Toyota Corolla works out to NRs. 225.00. Which means a full tune-up works out to US $3.30 out of which salaries, overheads and taxes all have to be worked out." He also mentioned that, "Kathmandu is also one of the most polluted [air-pollution] cities in the world. Technicians and repair facilities are not aware of the long term impacts of air pollution."

The huge response to the letter and forum posting led to a crusade among iATN members. Their intention, to bring aid to Nepali technicians by donating used equipment and sending technicians to the area in order to better train the locals.

I was one of the only people who responded to Irwin's request by being willing to travel across the world and deliver the donations. With the support of other members, I accepted Irwin's invitation to travel to Nepal. I posted several messages to the network asking people to donate money or equipment to help with the trip.

iATN members have shown an extreme interest and appreciation for my adventure. I shared a journal of my preparations and of my trip during my month long stay in Nepal. When I returned I was proud to be able to present a slide and video documentary to the delight of the membership at the iATN convention in October of 2002. I invite you to read these entries as though you were following my journey in realtime during the trainings in Kathmandu, Nepal.