Amy's experience conducting oral interviews

As a volunteer I had the opportunity to conduct my research in two very polar areas. Originally, my research was to consist of, predominantly, the traditional culture and way of life for women in a small village near Gorkha. Due to landslides in the area because of the monsoon, it would have taken double the travel time (six days on foot) to get to the village. Because of time constraints I decided to abandon the idea and try something new. I strictly believe that all things happen for a reason, and low and behold, the new placement I was given could not have been better.

I conducted my oral interviews in a small village near Dumre (see Oli's description of Phusretar). The majority of people in the village originated from the Newari background, which is a very homogeneous tribe. The women in the village were all extremely cooperative during the interviews. They were adamant about helping me understand the importance of arranged marriage, traditional gender roles, and had a vast pool of knowledge about Hindu legends and religious practices.

My research project changed forms and I began to conduct interviews at Papa's House in Kathmandu. The females there have been and continue to be increasingly exposed to modern ideologies. Most would like to have a love marriage rather than an arranged marriage, are socially aware of gender equality, and show so much interest to the future of Nepal that I was compelled to contrast the two in my research format. Both areas where I spent my time were a truly amazing and enriching experience.

Michael Hess is an amazing human being and he really tries his best to do everything he can for the volunteers and the children. The other volunteers and staff that I met are also angels themselves, and deserve praise for taking time out of their lives to help the less fortunate. And last but not least, the children and people of Nepal are amazing human beings and will leave a lasting impression on anybody's heart that comes here to volunteer.

I recommend for anyone who is interested in volunteering or conducting any type of research project to take the next step and fill out the application form, contact Michael, one of the other volunteers, or myself with any questions they may have.

Cheers, Amy.
aerrmann@hotmail.com