Three months ago, Hilton & Hyland pledged their support of Race4Good, the brainchild of Linda Cruse. The “hand up” revolution was designed to address life-threatening challenges plaguing communities around the world. As a result, Cruse created an exciting contest that would ultimately fly five students to Nepal to execute their business plan to affect change in the earthquake devastated village of Thangdor, Nepal.
Since then, five students from UCLA devised and executed a winning plan providing villagers with the best tools to promote self-sufficiency and sustainability for generations to come: bee keeping, bamboo growing and marigold cultivation. Flying from Los Angeles to Nepal, the group has managed to move mountains.
By teaching more modern methods of bee keeping, 23 more Thangdor families are ready to begin honey production that would not only allow for more medicinal remedies but also allow for an increased household income. Together, the UCLA team has helped Thangdor transition from slave labor to a sustainable future.
The change-makers also determined bamboo is not currently being used to its full capacity. At the moment, bamboo is only being used towards basket-making, vegetable storage and roofing. The five students reported it is the best “carbon sink” for greenhouse gases; an excellent source of fiber, protein, vitamin B, etc.; leading in stopping erosion and preventing landslides; a superb alternative to wood; and treats asthma, coughs, and kidney disease. Bamboo has the power to single-handedly transform the village and thanks to the UCLA team, it now can.
The young group also identified the great market opportunity for marigolds as a lucrative cash crop to sell in nearby Hindu towns of Kalikstan and Trisuli Bazzar. Needless to say, the process of transforming the lives of those in need has a domino effect. These remarkable students flew to Nepal to lend their helping hands, innovation, passion and experience and returned with a new perspective and endless compassion for the frailty of humanity – something so easily misplaced.
What the UCLA team accomplished is a true testament to the positive and lasting change we can bring when we stand united and give a “hand up”. To learn more about Hilton & Hyland Helping Hands, click here.