Greetings from Bhutan. I hope you have received my yesterday’s mail.
Once again may I offer you my CONGRATULATIONS on your numerous roles in the Council and the Associations of your City. Although I am aware that these multiple roles would mean added burden, and responsibility, it is demonstrative that you have earned the trust and faith of your people and authorities around you. I am in no doubt that you would live up to their expectations.
Today I write to convey to you a news that should surely warm your heart and give you a sense of fulfillment, and even, perhaps, joy and pride in your achievements - not only at home but in places thousands of miles away from your own shores.
You may recall that you had organized the donation of funds that went on to secure 85 acres of farmland with solar fencing, in a remote village called Goleng in Zhemgang, Central Bhutan. That was in 2016. In 2017, you followed up with another funding that helped fence the whole village of Nimshong spanning a distance of 7 KMs - another village - yet again in Zhemgang.
These activities were in support of a young and a fledgling agriculture farming cooperative - started by 16 youth from various villages in Zhemgang District - called Khengrig Namsum Cooperative (KNC), which was started in 2014.
In 2018, you donated a large farm tractor to KNC, valued at Nu.1.460 million. This donation was invaluable in every sense - it survived a fire in the processing facility of the KNC in which they lost everything - but the tractor. During the ensuing difficult times the cooperative faced, the tractor helped them earn much needed cash that helped overcome their difficulties.
If that were not enough, during the CODVID-19 pandemic when human and vehicular movements were restricted, the government authorities used your tractor to cart and deliver essential foods to the most remote parts of the District - to people who were under strict lockdown.
As you can see, your generosity has transcended all boundaries - the benefit has been immeasurable, to say the least.
But this day the reason why I write to you goes beyond singing your laurels - I want to let you know where the fledgling cooperative - the KNC - stands today - 8 years since you lent them your helping hand. The KNC as an organization has grown into something that can only be described as - HONORABLE. The Agriculture Department of the government admits that they are a shinning example of what agriculture marketing cooperatives should aspire to be. It is a measure of their success and competence that, for the first time in the history of Bhutan, they hosted the first ever Watermelon Festival in the Kingdom of Bhutan - yesterday: 04/06/2023. I was invited to the event and, therefore, I am able to share some of the following photos of the event.
The event marked the celebration of the 33rd Birth Anniversary of Her Majesty the Gyaltsuen, Queen of Bhutan
First ever Water Melon Festival held in Thimphu on June 4, 2023
Watermelons distributed during the event - eat to your heart's content - all FREE.
You may be happy to know that KNC is behind Bhutan’s largest export consignment to date - that of ten thousand kgs. of turmeric powder. Even better, they tell me that export of a like quantity of ginger is in the pipeline - yet again destined for the export market.
It is my hope that these success stories would warm your heart - and help you see meaning in what you are called upon to do - selflessly.
The KNC has a long way to go - but as you can see, they are on the path of success already - thanks to your hand holding them during their formative years.
Thank you once again on behalf of KNC and the Rotary Club of Thimphu who acted as the conduit for your funding.
DOWN MEMORY LANE
Goleng : 2016
Nimshong : 2017
A day trip to Zhemgang by helicopter - to hand over the US$79,000.00 agriculture production project : 2018
Charity on wheels - a large farm tractor donated to KNC : 2018
Bye and take care.