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Lonsdale Event Rentals brings the North Shore culture beyond borders.
In 2005 our President/CEO, Chris Fellbaum, went on a soul searching/adventurous visit to the Kingdom, of Bhutan, a landlocked country in South Asia located on the eastern end of the Himalayas. Bhutan is bordered to the north by China and to the South, east and west by India. Inspired by the culture, the simplicity of life and the need to engage in something bigger than what our daily life brings us, Chris was presented with an opportunity to make a difference and he grabbed it with both hands.
Lonsdale Event Rentals’ Drugyal Project was born in January 2010. The objective was to set up and help a small impoverished village community and a very remote boarding school in the Himalayan region of Bhutan.
The first project was focused on the small village of Bondy. Chris started small, working with a native resident, Karma Wangdi, from the Paro District of Bhutan and together built a woodwork facility in the small village of Bondy. This Social Enterprise builds wooden bushel apple crates for local organic apple growers. Using modern building techniques, the strengthened crates are used by the farmers to transport via truck their apples over very rugged Himalayan terrain into markets of India and Bangladesh. The operation has created much needed jobs directly at the facility and indirectly for the farmers in the village.
The second project was focused on supporting a remote Junior and Primary Boarding School in the Black Mountains region of Bhutan. Since 2010, Lonsdale Event Rentals has assisted with dinner meal supply, essential clothing, shoes, sporting items such as uniforms and equipment.
This region is home to a nomadic population of indigenous Bhutanese that are believed to be the original people. The boarding school is an opportunity for children to get a basic education along with providing ten months of complete care each year. This is a very remote, small mountain village school for over 60 children ages 4 to 14. A Principal, two teachers and a caretaker at the school provide 24-hour care for the children for these 10 months of school. The children are mainly comprised of a small population of children from the Bhut Monpa tribe of Bhutan. Currently we are looking into formalizing and registering the school as a charity.
In remote and rural Bhutan, education is not considered a necessity with emphasis simply on survival. The area is populated by the Monpa tribe who lead a peaceful and nomadic life with little desire to change from their simple life. Education is considered a luxury that no one can afford or indulge in as they support their day-to-day life by weaving handicrafts and basket while growing their meals.
The government, on the other hand, believes in education and is actively funding schools and creating incentives that encourage parents to send their children to school.
Our next project will focus on providing security fencing to enclose the boarding school property and to build a play park for the children. We hope to build a secure and safe environment for the students of the Jangbi Primary Boarding School.
The government of Bhutan wishes to empower the people of Bhutan by developing education and employment and Lonsdale Event Rentals is happy echo these efforts with our small projects. Bhutan is known for its serenity and the fact that the national focus is on Gross National Happiness as opposed to Gross National Profit, that’s saying a lot for a country that is listed among Third World Countries.
None of these initiatives and programs in Bhutan would be possible without the continued support of our long time patrons, new customers and our committed team here at Lonsdale Event Rentals. We are very grateful to you all!