Two outstanding students from Nepal are ready to embark on their education journey at Charles Darwin University (CDU) to help create a future free from human trafficking.
Supported by human rights organisation Maiti Nepal since their childhood, Madhu Regmi and Yuvraj Pokhrel have each received a full scholarship to study an Accelerated International Masters Qualifying Program, sponsored by UP Education, followed by a CDU-funded Masters of Business Administration.
With the World Day Against Trafficking in Persons observed this Saturday 30 July, Ms Regmi said it was a pivotal time to begin their studies.
“An opportunity like this, to travel and study our masters in Australia, is something that we could only dream of in Nepal,” Ms Regmi said.
“There are many women, children and young people like ourselves at Maiti Nepal who were victims of various vulnerable situations and are now rebuilding their lives through education and employment.
“Yuvraj and I were both orphaned as young children, and Maiti Nepal took us in. We now aspire to further our own studies and careers to help amplify the organisation’s mission of combatting human trafficking and child exploitation both in Nepal and internationally.”
Mr Pokhrel said they are grateful for the opportunity to make Darwin their second home.
"This experience will broaden our horizons and equip us with the tools to make a positive impact in our community and beyond,” Mr Pokhrel said.
“We are looking forward to becoming more independent, skilful and self-empowered role models for Maiti Nepal students who follow our footsteps in the future, and sharing our personal story with the CDU community.”
Earlier this year, CDU visited Nepal to establish a Memorandum of Understanding with Maiti Nepal, a not-for-profit organisation working to improve the lives of vulnerable individuals and rescued survivors of human trafficking and other forms of violence against women and children.
The MOU has already supported five Nepali children through high school and undergraduate degrees, and 16 women to undertake advanced level VET courses including tailoring, advanced computer training and beauty.
CDU Vice-Chancellor Professor Scott Bowman said sponsoring the talented international students to complete their postgraduate studies will be beneficial for both CDU and Maiti Nepal.
"Yuvraj and Madhu’s presence at CDU exemplifies our commitment to global education and showcases the university as an attractive destination for aspiring scholars worldwide,” Professor Bowman said.
“Our partnership will continue to have a positive impact on the lives of Maiti Nepal's children and beneficiaries, contributing to the development and growth of their skills so that they can be empowered and reintegrate back into society.”