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.
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
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.