With her foundation, the money she raised and contributed allowed
for two goats for each woman in two Nepal villages during her trip
last winter. She will be returning to Nepal from Jan. 22 through
March 5. Not only will Russell be bringing goats, but she is also
raising money to build a school, and for this she needs the public's
Russell's quest started in a chance meeting of a then 10-year-old
poor village boy Rabin Sitaula in the Kavre District.
"I met Rabin walking around Nepal in the Patan area," Russell
said. "He came up to me with all these children begging. Rabin spoke
really good English and said, 'Please I'm not interested in your
money I'm interested in speaking English with you.'"
So, Russell helped Sitaula with language and he was her tour guide
in exchange. Since Russell's visit they kept in touch over the years
"Rabin showed us everything. He was very bright," Russell said.
"He was also very hungry, but I didn't know it until last year. I
never went again until last year."
Before her return, Russell mentioned to some friends that she was
going back to deliver goats to help the women in the villages.
Sitaula became the regional director of her foundation and
facilitated with the government on his end.
Russell brought enough money for 87 goats, most of them pregnant,
at $125 each and made sure they were vaccinated.
"The excitement when I first delivered the goats ... I wanted to
jump up and down," Russell said.
The journey was arduous along narrow dirt roads, through potato
fields and across the river to the village.
"The women got very excited they usually don't hug, but they
hugged me," Russell said.
They sang and danced and put flowers in her hair and garlands
around her neck.
"I taught the women how to manage the goats and trained them,"
Russell said. "I got women together from different caste systems.
They said you can't put these women in mixed caste groups."
It was unheard of to mix classes.
"We had the women sign agreements [to care for the goats],"
Russell said. "Women don't read and write so they would put their
thumb print next to their name."
With her mission accomplished she thought it ended there.
"It took me one to two months to acclimate here because my soul
was left there," Russell said. "I really missed them and I knew I
needed to do more."
This time she will bring more goats to women in villages and also
wants to build a school in Ojhetar. The project is called "Women
Helping Women" and her goal is to enlighten the villagers with
literacy and self-dependence out of poverty.
To make a donation, please call her at (949) 497-2545, e-mail at
email@example.com or send a check to R. Star Foundation P.O. Box
4183, Laguna Beach, CA 92652.