LKDM Friend of Nepal Award 2013 to Brad Clarke and Graeme Kent
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on February 22, 2014
Brad Clarke and Graeme Kent received LKDM Friend of Nepal Award 2013 on the occasion of 5th Lumbini-Kapilvastu Day. The award was given by Consulate General of Victoria His Excellency Chandra Yonjan in a function after Pako Festa parade in Geelong on 22nd of February, 2014. The award was supposed to be awarded on 1st of December, 2013 in a function organised in Melbourne, however; Mr. Clarke and Mr. Kent could not attend the program because of their program in Nepal.
Justification of the Award:
“Australia and Australians fall in love with Nepal, the birthplace of Buddha and home to Sagamartha, Mt. Everest. When Australians travel to Nepal, we are captured by the physical beauty of the Himalaya and its people. We celebrate the wealth of Nepali hospitality and genuine kindness to each other and leg-weary travellers alike” – say Graeme Kent and Brad Clarke.
Graeme Kent and Brad Clarke, as staff on the Millennium Expedition for Young Australians to Nepal in 2000, were indeed captivated. The seven week journey into the Annapurna’s started a relationship with the country and its people that has grown and strengthened over the past 14 years. Over this time almost 1000 young Australians have visited with Graeme’s organisation, Aussie Action Abroad, working mostly in the Lamjung region of the Annapurna precinct, also around Pokhara, Kirtipur and various other districts. Projects have included construction of local school buildings, women’s committee buildings, temples and water treatment projects.
“Our teams have also worked alongside and learnt from medical practitioners focussing on women’s health. We have been amazed by the commitment of small NGO’s to support homeless children, victims of leprosy and visual impairments. Our hearts and minds seek to find opportunities to support these organisations build sustainable, healthy projects and programs that lift the overall health of Nepal” – say Graeme Kent and Brad Clarke. Both of them love Nepal not less than Nepalese do and visit Nepal very frequently with different projects.
For 14 years Aussie Action Abroad has employed local guides to support different projects and adventure activities. They are so proud of them and their professional approach. Shambhu Tamang, the great Himalayan climber and his team at Himalayan Guiding Institute have always kept them safe, healthy and happy; it is a relationship we cherish and hope to continue for many long years ahead.
“Yes Australians love Nepal and its people like our Dai, Didi, Vhai and Bahini. You are indeed our pariwaar (family). We continue to seek your friendship and partnership to see that Nepal remains the wonderous and wonderful home of Buddha and Sagamartha” – say Graeme Kent and Brad Clarke. Brad celebrated this year Dashain with Nepalese community and put on Tika from Ram. Isn’t it difficult to separate them from Nepali community?