About our foundation

Following considerable preparatory work, the first support project started in November 2002. Four enthusiastic family doctors travelled to Nepal to help women. In that first year, 1200 women were helped in six days in very primitive circumstances.

 

In 2003, Molly Verdegaal officially founded the Women for Women Foundation. The first board comprised of Molly Verdegaal, Tineke van der Laarse and Frank de Kok. In 2005, Loes Harmsen, our gynaecologist, also joined the board as the first real treasurer. They are still active, helped by new board members.

 

As a result of our efforts to get more in-depth knowledge about the health situation of women in Nepal, in 2004 we came in contact with Dr. Aruna Uprety. Pelvic floor prolapses was seen to be one of the main health problems suffered by Nepalese women. This was the beginning of the close collaboration with the Nepalese organisation RHEST, which still operates today. RHEST is now our main partner in Nepal.

 

Through the years, Women for Women has progressed from being a spontaneous private initiative to a more substantiated and structured organisation. It is still run by enthusiastic volunteers. None of these volunteers receive any reimbursement.

 

In Nepal, we collaborate with various Nepalese organisations. This ensures that the responsibility lies with these organisations and they are encouraged to take initiatives themselves. This means that they will be able to address the prolapse problem independently. This also means that there are no wasteful overhead costs including office costs. The only paid employee is Deepti Khakurel. She is our Nepalese programme coordinator and representative. In the Netherlands, the foundation is run by a board and several commissions.

 

From the very beginning, the foundation has held health camps twice a year. In addition, it performs various other activities in Nepal. For instance, education in the management of prolapses, training of female volunteers for female groups, encouraging and supporting research, follow up research, training practice for Nepalese trainee gynaecologists, prevention activities and issuing scholarships (see projects for more information).

 

Approximately 350 Nepalese health workers are trained annually. In the past years, thousands of women have been helped who would otherwise have had no prospects!