We got the opportunity to meet the Tibetan monk Geshe Pema Dorjee Lama during his Swedish tour in Gullspång in order to discuss the family home building and Pema gave lectures for our employees. Our company is in cooperation with Pema and we will build the family home “Home of Hope” in Nepal together.

Almost exactly a year ago, I met Pema at a Buddhist retreat in Småland, called Mundekulla.

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Shortly thereafter, we decided to collaborate and contribute to the fmaily home in the village of Ratankot in the mountains of Nepal.

The funny thing was that I had already decided that I wanted to create a “Home of Hope” but I did not know where, how or when so when I met Pema and heard him talking about the orphans everything fell into place.

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When Pema hold presentation to our employees he told a little about his life, how he escaped from Tibet to Nepal and how difficult his life was for many years. Today Pema is engaged in about 20 social projects in Nepal and he has been asked by his Holiness Dalai Lama to recreate a branch of Buddhism that was dying out. He also spoke about the village Ratankot and how for many years he has followed the orphans and felt a deep concern. During the lecture Pema was moved to tears several times, there is sadness over how tough they had it but also tears of joy that the kids will have a future with the help of Lööf Foundation support.

After the lecture we went home to our house and had dinner together. Pema had drawings with him from the children at the school in Ratankot to my youngest daughter school in Mariestad. He also brought a letter to my oldest daughter from his niece in India, great fun – I really love the cultural exchanges. I think it opens us up when we get the opportunity to learn about other countries cultures at an early age-

The next day Pema wanted to have help with his new laptop. It was not so easy so we came to the conclusion that an ipad would suit him better, easier to handle for his needs, therefore I went to Norlanders and bought an ipad for him. When the Norlander family was told that it is for the monk they read about in the newspaper, they also want to be involved with contributions. So they sponsored with headphones almost the same colour as his monk outfit!

Then we eat lunch together and discuss the project “Home of Hope”, we decide the following:

-Volunteer Johan Magnusson will to go back to Ratankot in Nepal and follow up construction of the family home in the beginning of January, 2015

-Inauguration will be at the Swedish National Day, June 6, 2015 and it feels very special

-We will introduce a sponsor program so that every orphaned child will have sponsor parents and it feels so good. Big tears rolled down my cheeks when we made that decision, it feels so meaningful for both the children and the adults who choose to support the orphans. Pema said “-Then they will of course not be orphans anymore ..”

It was with great gratitude and a little sadness that I said goodbye to Pema and Christina when they left just after lunch.

Next time we meet will be up in the mountains in Nepal at the inauguration of the family home and I’m very much looking forward to it !

Sophie Lööf 20/11 2014

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