A fortnight ago we had some truly terrible news regarding one of our sponsored children, Laxmi Dhakal.
Just over two weeks ago Laxmi was struck with severe stomach pain. After being seen by local health workers, Laxmi’s family tried to take her to the nearest health facility. Laxmi died on the way.
We know very little as to why such a young and healthy child died with such a bright future ahead of her. The medical knowledge locally is poor and postmortems are never carried out. Connecting the information that we have, we believe that Laxmi’s intestine was perforated, and without immediate surgical help, there was little that could be done.
Laxmi was cremated the day after her death as per tradition. All of the villagers, her school friends, teachers and all our staff and volunteers went to pay their respects.
Oliver, our UK-based voluntary coordinator remembers Laxmi fondly. In his last trip in early 2009, Oliver visited her school and family:
“We were dumbstruck by Laxmi’s death. I remember just a few months ago playing badminton with her and her sister, remarking how fun and outgoing she was, and without a care in the world.
“This is the kind of shock that you never quite recover from; if the untimely death of a 14-year-old doesn’t motivate you to really do something, nothing will.
Himalayan Learning is now considering how we can make a lasting memorial to Laxmi. Please, if you have any special ideas or would like to pass on your condolences to the family, just email us.
To read more about perforation of the intestines, see here or here.