Since 2014 we have a founded an Advisory Group of Street Dog Care. The Members are: Andrea Bringmann, Dr. Katharina Dworschak, Monika Grothus, Andreas Grothus, Birgit Gerber and Nir Thapa Mager.
Introduction of our members:
My name is Katharina Dworschak. I’m a German particle physicist and human physician. I’m founder and member of the board of a NGO, providing smokeless cooking stoves for the people in Nepal, Kenya and Ethiopia.
Some years ago I met Andrea in Kathmandu and learned about her engagement for suffering street dogs. Observing her work for several years I was more and more convinced about her amazing work.
As a human physician I’m supporting the idea of One Health Concept. That means you have always to consider humans, animals and environment. Treating humans without treating the animals in their close environment doesn’t make sense. I ask for teamwork between supporters of people welfare and animal welfare. Therefore I’m very happy to support this great project.
I volunteer to be a long-term supporter of Street Dog Care and to coach and consult the project as a member of the SDC Advisory group.
Introduction of: Andreas and Monika Grothus
(written by Andrea Bringmann)
I met Monika and Andreas for the first time in January 2011. They were visiting Nepal and looking for an animal organization to support. Both had very busy lifes back in Germany, but wanted to do something meaningful and support a project afar. We met in Boudha and had an instant connection and same way of wanting to help the dogs of Nepal. They decided to try to be part of it doing a fundraising event at Andreas Business Company during Christmas time.It was a big success and 900 Euro were raised at that time. Monika had prepared many little Christmas gifts (hours of handmade hard work) to sell at the auction.Since then we stayed in touch and they started to get more and more involved with SDC They were with us, when we moved to the new land in Boudha and saw the building coming up. They always put their trust and energy into SDC and I am so lucky to have found them and become their close friends over the past years. It is very crucial to have good friends around that believe in you, while you are trying to set up something. Monika and Andreas are definitely a very important part of SDC’s growing process.They helped with the registration process of the NGO in Germany and took care of the administration work too. It was very helpful, as I was far in Nepal and communication with banks and tax office were so difficult for me to handle from far. Nowadays, both are on the Advisory group of SDC Monika as a fundraiser and Andreas in the role of Administrator. When they came to visit us in 2013 they felt in love with one of our dogs Teddy and decided to adopt him. He had a bad front leg injury and the legs had joined wrongly. He needed a special surgery in Germany and was lucky to find a family like them. They live now happily together.I am looking forward to many happy years together at SDC Four years have past since we first met and many things have happened.
Introduction of: Birgit Gerber
In 2008 Andrea and I met at the Boudha stupa, both being the first time in Nepal, both having left a busy work life behind to “do” something new. None of us knew at the time in what ways we would spend much more time in Nepal.
Andrea and I met often at our common friend’s restaurant, Nir’s Toast Bakery, to discuss life and everything over a yummy meal or a coup of nice Chai tea. Once we ran into each other, again at the stupa, which seemed to turn out to be the place, most our encounters would happen. She was looking for help to get a very sick dog, suffering from mange, into a cab, so she could bring him to the vet. I went to buy some towels so she could wrap them around the doggy and the cab driver would have no reason to refuse the dog. That was the first time, I saw Andrea helping a dog. Many, many more would follow this incident.
Andrea settled for good in Nepal, I would be there on and off, and we were even neighbors at some point, but mainly established a wonderful friendship. Andrea kept on building Street dog care, starting out with the camp at the stupa, while I was mainly focusing on studying Tibetan language and Buddhist philosophy. Over the years I would help in practical ways here and there with the dogs, and also try to get more people interested in SDC by spreading the word.
I have always been in total awe the work of Street Dog Care, and I could tell you so many stories, but the most important thing is, that Andrea and her amazing SDC-team are continuing to help, where help is needed, with every inch of love and strength they possess.
At the end of 2014 I left Kathmandu and resettled back in my home country Switzerland in 2015. Now I work in a part time office job at a company and use the other time for translation projects.
So when Andrea asked me to become a member of her SDC-Advisory group I felt honored to become an official part of such noble work. I do hope that by this I can be of good support for SDC and again, would like to encourage everyone who reads this, to continue (or start) to help SDC with whatever is possible (money, volunteering, or even just being kind and loving to any street dog).
Introduction of: Nir Thapa Magar
(written by Andrea Bringmann)
I was introduced to Nir by two friends from Germany (Ulli and Sabine from Berlin), with whom I was travelling through India and Nepal. We reached Kathmandu together and initially I wanted to stay for only 3 weeks. As my friends were worried to leave me alone in Nepal, they introduced me to their long-term friend Nir. They knew I would be in good hands, as he is a very kind man and in addition has an excellent restaurant and bakery in Boudha, which is called Nir’s Toast Bakery café’. We instantly became friends and I would go each day to enjoy my meals at his place. After a while we had this idea to feed the dogs at the stupa, as they looked all so hungry and sick. Nir owned the perfect place, a restaurant where we could just make lots of food for them. We started to distribute food during the nights. Nir would prepare a big red bucket for it, as you can see on the photos. On full moon nights we would offer it on little silver paper plates to them.
Two friends from Germany visited me during that time, Janine and Arnd and decided to give me 50 Euro for the food of the dogs. I was very happy about the donation, but somehow I felt this was too much for food and we might be able to do something bigger with it. We already were spending money for the food anyhow. An idea popped up to make a health camp for the dogs to treat them and help them with their skin problems and vaccinate them. I had already tried washing one dog (Strubel) and had experienced that this was to difficult to handle by myself.
After researching how to do this and talking with the community in Boudha we managed to set this up. Nir was there to help, giving his table from the restaurant and helping with many kind words and affection for the dogs.
Nir Toast Bakery café and feeding the dogs in 2008.
He came to assist during our first health camp in Boudha and helped washing the dogs. I was very happy to have him by my side. The community knew him well as he was a restaurant owner in Boudha and we quickly earned good trust by the success of the event.
During the first Saturday camp on February 7th in 2009 we washed about 15 dogs and checked up on all the dogs around the Stupa of Boudhanath. Many needed long term care at that time. It was clear soon enough, that one camp would not be enough to cure them all from their diseases.
Somehow a monk showed up during the set up of the health camp and told me, that I would need a donation box. A nice Mexican helper volunteered quickly to make one right in that moment – out of cardboard. He illustrated a dog paw on it and wrote HELP US TO HELP DOGS!
As soon as the box was ready the monk took it and moved around in the crowd of people collecting donations. It was impressive, and he kindly handed me over the box full of notes at the end of the camp. Nir and I counted them. It was exactly 50 Euro/5000 nrs. The same amount we had just paid for the first camp in Vet. fees and medicine. I had no choice and told Nir, this is the money of the dogs…I guess we have to come back and do this again next Saturday. He was just smiling and confirming, that this might be the way to go…
Since that day on February 7th, 2009 we never stopped doing the Saturday camp in Boudha and Street Dog Care was slowly established in the community. Initially we would keep all our items at Nir’s restaurant. Each Saturday we would sneak out a table from his restaurant and go in the square to treat the dogs. Some curious people started to appear and help. Tourist, students and teachers from the Rangjung Yeshe Institute in Boudha like Marie Bertaina, Tsering Wangchuk, Franziska Oertle, Horst Koch were the first volunteers. Our first Vet. volunteers were Dr. Susmita Gautam and Suraj Dhakal. Susmita is daughter of our known Veterinary – Dr. Gautam, his clinic is in Maharajganj. Dr. Gautam and Dr. Ghimire are long term advisers and Veterinarians for SDC. Many dogs passed through their helping hands, were operated and saved.
Anyhow back to Nir’s story:
Nir was getting on with his routine at the restaurant and smiling at me as I was not leaving Boudhanath as planned. I wonder if he had planned this with the dogs of Boudha? I specially doubt about Strubel the first dog I was washing and helping. He is my “secret founder” of Street Dog Care… You can see him in the photos below.