Skype 2010 01

Progress Summary April, 2010 MEP: “Low Cost Food Preservation for farming communities in Rural Nepal”

Complete file is here

April 3, 2010 (Skype meeting with Nepal team)

1. Delay in money transfer from Japan team and the mistake in currency conversion. Correction will be done soon and budget will be sent according to what is estimated.
2. Nepal team will read the email thoroughly and if there is any question/confusion, the emails will be written more specifically/precisely or will ask for a skype meeting.
3. Nepal team will try to avoid any errors in budget estimation like what happened in budget estimation for the storage project last time.
First money transfer: Total amount of JPY 137,217 (€ 1091) was send to Nepal team for MEA Project, Reimbursement and Nepal Club (April 6, 2010).
Regular skype meetings are conducted to monitor the project progress as well as to clarify queries from both Nepal and Japan team.
Revised budget estimation was send from Nepal team incorporating corrections pointed out by Japan team.

April 17, 2010 (Skype meeting with Nepal team)

1. Land issue for the project: Need to convince the villagers for the land.
a. Can motivate the villagers with some kind of incentive.
i. Bikram’s mom can provide trainings to mahila samuhas (women groups) which can help them for income generation in Sudal village.
ii. After the storage project, the village can have an ICT center with couple of computers.
b. ICT channel is just a platform. Both the teams are using ICT channel platform for the project. The concept was made clear.
2. New members must be added for the project to be carried on successfully. Nepal team will make a presentation or hold a workshop soon.
3. If Nepal team has some confusion about whom to talk to about a particular issue, Nepal team will email Santosh, Sabita or Priza to consult first.
4. Santosh, Sabita and Priza will have the skype meetings turn by turn with Nepal team and the updates will be provided through minutes.

April 18, 2010 (Skype meeting with Nepal team)

1. Progress on addition of new members:
a. Most people are interested in the work and appreciate the student initiative but are not dedicated to volunteer from their side.
b. Nepal team is looking for some really interested and dedicated volunteers rather than just increasing the team population.
c. Plan to make another presentation in the department to get more interested and dedicated people, especially targeting first and second year students from IOE, TU.
d. Two potentially new members have shown great interest. Background:
i. Civil Overseer
ii. Mechanical Engineer (Let’s, see how it goes)
2. Storage unit:
a. Plan of a field visit on Monday, April 19, 2010. Purpose: Formal procedure to get the land for the storage unit.
i. Note: Land formalities were supposed to be through the local teacher Mr. Gun, but he is not available now. So, things might be a little more complicated.
ii. Need to get local people’s trust for the land. Different people have different opinion.
b. Bamboo treatment is necessary. Consulting with the Nepali organization, that builds houses at low cost. (Flexibility and Low cost). Meeting: probably on Tuesday, April 20, 2010.
c. Bamboo contract: Lack of local labors to work. So, if a contract can be agreed with abari, that will be great.
d. 4m*4m hole. So, 6m*6m bamboo structure: Bamboo treatment takes about 4-6 weeks. That is the tentative schedule. It will be possible to prepare the schedule only after Monday’s visit and after talking to abari.
e. Nepal team wants to have a skype meeting with Chandra. Bikram will e-mail Chandra soon. Chandra, please let them know when you can be available.
f. Nepal team will send the tentative schedule next week so that Chandra can plan his visit schedule.
3. Money: Whatever amount was less than budgeted and the money for club formation will be sent by Japan team soon to Nepal team.
4. Status of other MEA award teams: Nepal team should be and is in contact with them.
5. Both teams will read both teams’ emails thoroughly.
Bikram had a meeting with people of Sudal village on April 19, 2010 and had a contract with Mr. Guna Raj Subedi about using his private land for public purpose. Minutes of April 19, 2010 from Bikram is given below:

Meeting with Local Villagers Date: 2010/04/19

1. The local people could not come into an agreement for a public place as a site. The site that we had selected could not be obtained. Still we have asked them to come into conclusion within this week.
2. On the other hand, we had another meeting with Mr. Guna Raj Subedi who agreed to give his land. The minute of the meeting translated in English is given below:

“(signed by Mr. G. R. Subedi) Today, 19th April,2010 Mr Guna Raj Subedi in Bhaktapur VDC-8 has agreed to provide his personal land which was selected as a installation site for the project entitled “Low Cost Food Preservation For Farming Communities in Rural Nepal” in coordination of Mr. Bikram Adhikari. It has been agreed that the property despite being private, shall be made accessible to everyone for benefit of local community. It is also agreed that, if the local people come up with a public place for the project installation, the project will be implemented as agreed by the committee.
(signed by Mr. B. Adhikari) (signed by Mr. G. S. Kunwar) (signed by Mr. G. R. Subedi) ”

3. The training program will be organized after the local women committee come up with the selected site. If not, the program will be postponed until another meeting of Nepal team.
4. After the completion of the project, 2-3 computers will be provided to the school where Mr. G.R. Subedi is Principal.

Nepal team could not have a meeting with contact person from “abari” as he was busy.
Bikram had a skype meeting with Chandra on April 26, 2010 to discuss about the technical parts. The size of storage unit has been changed to 4m by 2m (from 4m by 4m). The reasons are: 1) Ease in potato handling and testing, 2) Storage unit is going to be constructed in a private land.
The cooling system will be send from Japan rather than ordering a separate unit from India. It is because there has been delay in shipping the equipments from India.
Nepal team is having a problem now, since there is strike in Nepal starting from May 1 (not sure till when will it continue). They are not being able to visit Sudal village. So the only option now is to wait until the strike is taken back.
Meanwhile, Nepal team will focus on developing ideas, how to recruit more students in the group. In addition, they will try to collaborate with other Mondialogo project groups from Nepal.