Image banner: BMKF scholars pose for their group photo
What a year this has been! From the #MeToo movement to a record number of women running for office and elected to the House in the U.S. Across the planet, women are being recognized for their contributions and leadership. It is truly an exciting time to be a woman and to support those who are changing the world.

Nevertheless, we must not rest on our laurels. This time is far from where we need to be. Change has been slow and at times, stifled. We will continue to hit ceilings and fight to overcome obstacles that seem insurmountable. And yet, if we look back at those things that have passed, the journey we have been on, our stories are oftentimes laced with pain. A pain that changes us yet moves us to fight harder still. It's not easy. It's never been easy. And yet our scholars and alumnae press on.

As another year moves closer to turning over, now is the time to #GiveBig. It is because of YOU, our supporters and donors, that such progress continues.

With your help, our scholars are changing the world, breaking down barriers, moving our collective journeys closer to a time when every year is the year of the woman.

Happy Holidays from us to you. You are making a difference and we appreciate you.

Shannan Chapman
BMKF Board President
This year, every dollar received through our November #GiveBig campaign and December’s Year-End fundraising efforts will be allocated to our 2018 Mass Communications & Journalism Scholarship.
Combined, we are hoping to raise $10,000 to cover all four years of studies and related expenses for one deserving recipient of this award. We believe it’s essential to promote women’s voices in the media and this scholarship is our next step in providing Nepalese women the skills and confidence to have their voices heard in an increasingly impactful and widespread way.

Thank you for helping us elevate women’s voices! Your gift, no matter the size, is deeply appreciated by all of us.

"Words are events, they do things, change things. They transform both speaker and hearer; they feed energy back and forth and amplify it. They feed understanding or emotion back and forth and amplify it."

– Ursula K. Le Guin –
You've no doubt heard some of the incredible stories of our scholars. Confronted by poverty and traditional expectations that would confine them to a domestic role, these women chose instead to challenge the norm. They chose to pursue education, empowerment, and autonomy. They chose to dream BIG. 

The scholarships we offer through the Bo M. Karlsson Foundation are not what made these women successful—their brilliance and determination are to thank for that! But BMKF's scholarships removed obstacles in the way and helped these women fulfill their potential.

Generous supporters like you are the catalyst that helped these women to rise above their challenges. All of us, and each of our brave women scholars, are grateful beyond words. But we'll start with two: THANK YOU!
Pema Sherpa

“My aim is to become a social worker. I love to work with children and I want to do something remarkable in the social sector development.”

Pema and her sister Neema, also a BMKF scholar, grew up in a poor family. Though both girls were brilliant, and though their parents valued education and spent everything they had on the girls, they still relied on tuition assistance.

Pema is bright, articulate, and proactive in her academics. Outside of school, she has done cancer prevention and awareness projects, raised funds for an old age home, and assisted with research related to infertility and the quality of living standard for breast cancer patients. Talk about remarkable. 

Today, Pema Sherpa has her Bachelor of Social Work and Rural Development and is giving back to her community as a Field Coordinator at Hamro Palo, an NGO in Nepal.

Sarita Sharma

Sarita was one of the first women in Nepal to graduate with a degree in electronics engineering. In 2014, she was the only woman among 135 engineering graduates selected to participate in Nepal’s Information & Communication Technology program, sponsored by the United Nations.

As part of ICT, Sarita traveled to the remote areas of Nepal to help local governments address issues related to rapid response for disaster aid, health, education, and more.

Today, Sarita is currently a Senior Officer in the Technical Department of the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal at the Tribhuvan International Airport. She serves on the BMKF board as a way to help fellow women.

Her little sister, Babita, is following in her sister's footsteps and studying engineering. Both girls are the only in their remote village to go to college. 
Mandira Sapkota

“My lifelong dream to attend medical college is moving forward, thanks to Bo M. Karlsson Foundation. After I complete my Nursing, I want to continue with a M.Sc. in Nursing for a better career. My passion for nursing is matched only by my interest in serving to people, so my decision to specialize as a nurse comes from the heart.”

Organized, smart, and hard working, Mandira consistently ranked among the top students in her program at Scheer Memorial Hospital.

But her path to the top wasn't easy. Mandira is from the historic town of Banepa about 25 km east of Kathmandu. Her father’s pension just covers the family’s basic needs. Her mother is a housewife and helps with farming. Money was short.  

With the help of BMKF, Mandira was able to pursue her dream without worrying about finances. She graduated in 2017 and is now working in a hospital.

The late Lucile Flanagan was an exceptional woman of rare strength, beauty and grace who firmly and passionately believed in the power of educating women. Through her final years, she was a devoted supporter and frequent donor of the Bo M. Karlsson Foundation. 
These are Lucile's words:
“The Bo M. Karlsson Foundation is not fly-by-night altruism or a vast organization needing layers of management. One girl at a time is an achievable goal (as we’ve already shown) with an enormous future return on our investment. It is the right mechanism and the right time. [...] One shows a dozen others how it’s done, the dozen are an example to a hundred more, and the hundred let thousands see that it’s possible. We can give momentum to a movement only waiting for a little help to make a big change."
Happy holidays
Warm Namastay!

Here in Nepal we just celebrated two of our biggest festivals which is Dashain and Tihar. All the scholars went to their villages and celebrated with their families. It was a nice break for every one of us and also an excuse to just eat and spend the day with our loved ones playing cards and flying kites.

And as the Christmas & New Year season is coming near, I would like to wish you happy holidays on behalf of all the BMKF family from Nepal.

Pabita Basnett
BMKF Program Manager
Kathmandu, Nepal

"Kopila was frightened at the yell ... She saw other passengers and conductor staring at her and soon dismiss their conversation, as it was a regular episode in a public vehicle ... If only they could see and understand the predicament she was in."

Years ago and long before the #MeToo or #TimesUp movement, a BMKF alumna wrote a poignant short story which feels especially timely and resonant these days.

Read Neema's story, “The Bud that Withered Before it Bloomed” on our blog.
Copyright © 2018 Bo M. Karlsson Foundation, All rights reserved.

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