The GF story
Laxmi Prasad Sharma Devkota (1937-2007)
The Gorkha Foundation was started in memory of my father, the late Laxmi Prasad Sharma Devkota (1937-2007). He was a lifelong social worker and pioneer in agricultural development in Nepal, especially in the high altitude areas: helping to shape the country’s Pasture and Fodder Department from 1966-1987.
After his tenure with the government, for 10 years he supervised livestock research for the Dhading Development Project, and directed the Nepal Agro Forestry Foundation. He served as a member of the National Dairy Development Board, provided leadership for the Department of Livestock and the Nepal Agriculture Research Council, and was the founder and president of the Society for Sustainable Development (SSD), an NGO focusing onincreasing skill-sets among farmers.
My father also worked with various international organizations, such as the United Nations Development Programme, the Food and Agriculture Organization, the German Agency for Technical Cooperation and the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development. He travelled to many remote areas in all 14 regions of Nepal; also visiting India, Pakistan, Bhutan, Bangladesh, China, Australia, the UK, USA and Germany to exchange ideas with specialists.
As a son of Gorkha, my aim is to carry on my father’s legacy in improving the living conditions for the underprivileged in the region, and if we can accomplish just a fraction of his achievements, it will be a triumph. The foundation is built upon the belief that to strengthen the root of Gorkha, we have to start from the farming communities therein. Agriculture and livestock are the lifeblood of the region, and any attempts at sustainable development must understand this. Like my father before me, I believe that by empowering the people of Gorkha with skills they can use everyday, they are able to create for themselves the breathing space needed to alleviate the cycle of mere subsistence farming. These are not revolutionary changes to their ways of living; just means of increasing efficiency and allowing them to grow as producers and wage earners. This, then, creates space to develop the other facets of society.
Through the foundation’s work, we travel all over the region and work with many other humanitarian organizations to understand and act upon the issues that are most important to the people of Gorkha. Together we can make a difference.
– Bijaya Devkota
Chairman, Gorkha Foundation