Wangchuk Rapten Lama

One Young World Profile profiles

Wangchuk Rapten Lama

Studies:
nil

I am passionate about

<p>
As a medical officer in one the poorest countries in the world, I'm passionate about healthcare. There's no healthcare in most of the villages in Nepal and most of Nepal is villages. Nepal is the hungriest country in Asia. As a Buddhist monk, all the work I do is meant as service for the founder of our schools and monasteries Thrangu Rinpoche, my lama.
Much of Nepal was destroyed in the earthquakes and the trails were wrecked by landslides, but no help came from the government. No help was going into the Tsum Valley where I come from. People had no shelter, no food and no medical care so I delivered food, tents, tarps, blankets, medical care and clothing. I hired a helicopter and made 9 flights into the Himalayas but first, I had to raise the money for each flight - 2500 to 3500 USD/hour. On Day 6, after the government let private helicopters fly, I got into Tsum, delivered food and medical care and evacuated two seriously injured people. I kept delivering aid until everyone in the valley had food and shelter. </p>

<p>
I come from the Tsum Valley in Gorkha District. It lies on the border of Tibet and it takes a week's hard trek to get there. The trails are very dangerous. The villages in the mountains of Nepal are totally undeveloped. There is no sanitation, electricity, running water, communications, education or healthcare. Most families in the Himalayas try to put some of their children into monasteries or nunneries - to keep their children alive, and to get an education for them - to be a Buddhist, you have to be literate.</p>

<p>
I became a monk at the age of seven. All my family is uneducated. If I had stayed in my village, I would be an illiterate yak herder. When I was small, I saw my villagers die with no healthcare. My own mother died at 36 because she didn't have access to healthcare. These are the reasons I've become a healthworker and the reasons I am passionate about healthcare for people in Nepal.</p>

Actions

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I have been responsible for buying all the medicine and medical equipment for our monasteries, the nunnery and the schools since I was 15. I went sent to live in our main school to set up the clinic and train others. At the school, I am responsible for the healthcare of children and staff (about 700 people). This includes vaccinations, referrals to specialists and to hospitals. I help to fundraise for the schools' and monastics' clinics
Since the earthquakes hit, I have used social media (Facebook, What'sapp and WeChat) to make the world aware of the tragedy in my country. Many, many people helped. I made a film to thank all the sponsors. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fU4PAjx99hA but Nepal still needs help - more than 300,000 homes were flattened. Monsoon has started, bringing landslides and water-borne diseases.I </p>

<p>
Shree Mangal Dvip Boarding School (SMD - where I live) has hosted 2 free dental camps every year for more than a dozen years. I expedite the camps and do the outreach to bring patients in. We serve thousands of poor children as well as monks and nuns. Global Dental Relief www.globaldentalrelief.org</p&gt;

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I have been initiating and organizing free health camps (vision, medical, gynaecology, dermatology &amp; general) in rural areas and at our monasteries. We dispense medications and glasses, etc. I expedite the camps and coordinate all medical volunteers coming from overseas and from inside Nepal.</p>

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A little more than two years ago, our 79 year old founder, Ven. Thrangu Rinpoche had a stroke while he was teaching in Malaysia. When his condition stabilized and he came back to Nepal, I was called to provide medical care for him. He was much better within a month. We disciples all over the world were relieved and I was honoured to care for him.</p>