The Divine Yoga "Gurukul / School" is an elementary school located in Kathmandu, Nepal. The name of the school represents the joining together of traditional academic studies and classical yoga. The school serves as a vehicle for tapping into the unlimited potential of each child to facilitate world peace and harmony, while giving them a solid traditional academic education.
In order to keep the school running and to meet the growing demand within our community for the type of education we provide, we require financial help. We are requesting funds to expand the number of students. Currently the school has 5 students. Our goal is to reach 25 students by April of 2019, the beginning of the next Nepali school year.
We have established this school to provide holistic education to under privileged while preserving the indigenous culture. One hour of every day is devoted to the study of Sanskrit, as it is an integral and unique part of the school model connecting to the native culture and traditional yogic path. The students study and practice Classical Yoga one hour every school day and are taught to continue their daily practice on their own (including non-school days). This is an essential and unparalleled pillar of the Divine Yoga School, giving the students the necessary discipline, physical and mental health necessary to excel in their academic studies.
Our aim is to provide free education for those most in need, while inspiring the children to cultivate higher human qualities. At the Divine Yoga School we go beyond academics to give a comprehensive learning experience that encourages them to bring out their creativity and hidden talents, while ensuring their emotional and spiritual well-being. Growing and learning in the supportive community atmosphere of the Divine Yoga School gives the children a feeling of belonging helping them to develop their inner confidence and self-esteem; in order to reach their fullest potential. The result is children who are physically healthy, mentally peaceful and emotionally joyful.
Ninety percent of the curriculum is in English with the exception of the Nepali and Sanskrit components. We incorporate an inclusive, multi-cultural approach to expand the student’s knowledge of their indigenous culture, while gaining exposure and understanding of other cultures. Daily Attendance (more than 95% daily and annually) is excellent and parent participation is high. We are certain it can become a model for the nation and the world.
Through the practice of yoga, particularly the meditation and mindfulness aspects, the children cultivate tools for success in their studies. Their concentration and memory skills are enhanced; while they gain inner peace to handle any type of stress. They naturally develop divine qualities like humility, patience, generosity, contentment and love for all living entities. In this way the children develop good character and hope for their future, while the original Nepali culture is preserved for the benefit of the larger society.
The problem facing the country of Nepal is that its unique spiritual heritage is in danger of being lost due to the push of modern civilization and globalization. Its culture is very ancient based on yogic wisdom as yoga’s roots can be traced back to the Himalayan region of Nepal. Yoga is a unifying force that brings together people of all castes and creeds as brothers and sisters; recognizing and appreciating the inherent humanity in everyone. With your help we would like to continue to work to preserve this culture for future generations by starting with the young children.
Our school has been open for four years and is run by the Dhungana family. Yogi Prakash Dhungana, a well-respected and experienced yoga master, is the chairman of the school and has been providing for the school through yoga teaching. Everything he makes goes to cover the expenses of the school, including the salaries of our four teachers. His wife, Rama Dhungana, is a naturopathic doctor who provides motherly care for the children along with tending the school’s organic garden that provides sustainability.
For three years they were renting a school room to run the classes, but have now constructed a small building next to their residence, that is surrounded by green gardens in the countryside. It is a highly cost effective model that has been very successful, as evidenced by the number of students progressing to the next grade and high attendance rates. So far, every student has progressed to the next grade level each year since the school was started. In order to expand and to run the types of programs that are required we are greatly in need of external funding.
In order to facilitate bringing more children to the school we would like to have a bus service to pick up the children within a 10 km radius. This is a very important facility as we are located in a rather mountainous region where it is difficult to walk long distances. The average family does not own a car and the winters are quite cold.
Our project’s intention is to provide the best well-rounded education to the disadvantaged children of our region, while preserving Nepali culture and uplifting the local community.
Guru Yogi Prakash