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2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit

The Ama Foundation

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Education, Homeless & Housing, International, International Relief

Mission: The Ama Foundation was created to provide a home, family environment and education for the most underprivileged children of Nepal.  we rescue children from trafficking, drugs and malnutrition and help them to grow up to be productive, happy and healthy citizens of Nepal.

Results: All of our Ama Ghar "alumni" are either in vocational training, university, internships or employment. These successes range from a doctor and a nurse to a trekking guide and a child care worker. Donations to Ama Foundation help these children to achieve their dreams.

Programs: Operation of home ama ghar in kathmandu, nepal that provides food,clothing, shelter, medical care, and education to nepali children who are orphaned, abandoned, or under privileged.

Community Stories

37 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1 Fisch

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

We were honored to visit Ama Ghar in Kathmandu, where we were greeted warmly with traditional blessings and big smiles. The children are delightful, polite and engaging. Ama Ghar provides a loving home and giant family to these hard-working students as they prepare to move on to jobs and higher education.

1 Kishore Q.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Ama Ghar in true spirit is a loving home for all the children living there. All the staffs and children are a big loving family which is hard to imagine. Ama Ghar runs like a family and not just any nonprofit organisation. It's hard to believe if you don't fall in love with the children once you visit Ama Ghar. Ama Ghar is just AMAZING!!!!!!!!!

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteered at a number of fundraising events for this organization and I must say they are impressive for such a small non profit.. They go out of the way to spread the word about Ama Ghar and Nepal, as a whole. They also partner with other organizations in order to cross-promote those organizations in order to raise greater awareness. Ama Foundation truly has hard working and caring individuals who truly want to make a difference. This has inspired me to, not only visit Nepal, but to want to do more!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I first visited Ama Ghar in 2008 while I was living and working in Nepal. I was immediately struck by how warm and welcoming Ama Ghar was: The children and staff are both wonderful. During the few years that I lived in Kathmandu, I regularly spent weekends and festivals at Ama Ghar. Ama Ghar became my family and home away from home. Since leaving Nepal, I've continued to return to Ama Ghar each year. Ama Ghar has provided the children with a loving home and education. It's been such a privilege to watch the children grow into young adults over the past six years with life opportunities they likely would not have had without Ama Ghar's love and support, as well as watch new children join the family and blossom under the loving care that they receive here. It's a unique and special place that I know I will continue to visit for many years to come.

1 Fred24

Board Member

Rating: 5

I just returned from Nepal. While in Kathmandu, I visited Ama Ghar. I am happy to report that all is well there. The children are happy and successful. One of our oldest girls recently graduated from med school and is now an MD. I have been on the board for two years. It's a great group to work with. We always put our 50 kids first. We need help though. We need to find our new leaders of tomorrow that will keep our home open. At Ama Ghar, we have solar power, waste water recycling, an oven, a loom, a computer room and plenty of space for 50 kids to grow up in. Let's keep it rolling for these kids!

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

I joined the board for the Ama Foundation because of their unique approach towards how they run a children's home. They really make it a top priority to give a family environment, thus girls and boys of all ages live together. The children living in the home are brought up to become supportive of each other and productive members of society. Children do volunteer work in the community. They are supported to achieve the highest level of their academic ability. I made my first visit to Ama Ghar this summer. It was great to see all children engaged in play, housekeeping as well as studies. Additionally, the playground is open to other children in the area, and it was great to see kids from neighboring families join in a cricket match with Ama Ghar kids. It has been nearly two years since I have been part of the board, and I hope that I will keep on having time to be involved with this great organisation in years to come.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have been a Board Member of The Ama Foundation for almost a couple of years now and have seen first hand how great of a job this organization does in helping out the underprivileged kids in Nepal. It is a very efficiently run organization with some great individuals as team members. I have also visited Ama Ghar (the house which 50+ kids call home) in Nepal and was absolutely impressed by how well the kids are treated there, how happy they are and how much is really invested in securing a good future for each and every one of them. Bonnie Ellison (Bonnie Aunty) in Nepal does a tremendous job in making sure each and every kid gets a warm and loving care, education and most importantly, a sense of family and belonging within this house. The various fund raising events held within the US and parts of Europe contribute to the continued success of this organization and I have no hesitation in endorsing this organization as one of the best in its class. Keep up the good work!

Previous Stories
1

Board Member

Rating: 5

The Ama Foundation is a great organization that helps the underprivileged and at-risk kids in Nepal find a safe home where they can get the needed love, care and support to attain their dreams. About 50 kids live in a great home called "Ama Ghar" and work towards fulfilling their dreams through formal education in good, private schools and informal education within the house to become responsible members of the society. For the past 12 years, this organization has done a phenomenal job in accomplishing its goals and continues to find ways to grow and help more and more kids every year. I have been involved with this organization for the past 3 months or so and have had a very positive experience about the focus, dedication and creativity of the board members of this organization who are passionate about these kids. Please spend a few moments to read more about this organization and help in its cause to provide appropriate care to some of the less fortunate kids in Nepal.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I had been hearing about Ama Ghar for several years though my family, some who had served the foundation in various ways. When we, me and my two school aged children, decided to come visit/serve this Fall (2014), we started researching both Ama Ghar home and the situation and circumstances in Nepal. My confidence was boosted when several independent friends of friends who are in the know regarding Nepal said it was on the up and up and that we should visit.

Now that we are finishing a 3 week visit to Nepal, most of which has been spent here at Ama Ghar, I can offer my high marks. What is happening here, on the surface, looks relatively strait forward. There are kids (teens to 5-6 year olds) who have various support networks or none at all. This home feeds, clothes, houses and attends to their education. Strait forward does not mean simple or easy, it is quite am accomplishment to do with for 50 + children. However, what is truly noteworthy and quite inspirational is the sense of family.

While I am still attempting to discover how this amazing formula for family has come together, I can clearly see that the staff, from Director to cook and laundress, all have and demonstrate a long list of traits. Among these are: integrity, patience, kindness, humor, a sense of purpose, a sense of fun, respect, orderliness, fairness and a love for what they are doing and love for each and every child. It is not a perfect family, it is a real family. They share in each others victories, they share in losses, they support each other and, of course, they bicker and they amend their differences. Creating a sense of family like this can only happen when you give your heart. This house, Ama Ghar, has real heart.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I donate to Ama Foundation because I appreciate that it's a grass-roots organization where my donation really makes a difference in someone's life - and I can see it for myself when I visit Ama Ghar in Nepal. It inspires me to see these children - who come from very, very difficult situations, including trafficking, malnutrition and abuse - blossom into happy, healthy, laughing children with the opportunity to lead productive lives.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I visited Ama Ghar back in 2010 with a friend. The children were simply amazing and warmly embraced us part of the family. Four + years later, I am still in contact with the organization and the children stay in touch as pen pals. I can't think of a better place to visit in order to put life in perspective and see & feel the true meaning of love.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I came to Ama Ghar not knowing exactly what to expect. This was my first volunteer experience. I walked away from my experience feeling relieved there is a program like this for underprivileged children. The environment is really that of a BIG family. All the Brothers and Sisters are so sweet and loving and very smart. Sharwan and Bonnie have an amazing crew of people helping with the children. I had a blast with every! I plan to continue to support the foundation and hope to return soon!

Adam N.

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I stayed at Ama Ghar for two weeks this summer. It was very nice to see them function as the big family they are. Having spent such a short time there I wasn't able to get to know each and every child well, but what I did sense at the core of each one was a good heart.
I got the clear sense that Ama Ghar really does put the children's needs on the pedestal as the top priority, and when I asked one of the older ones - an adult - if he thought that the children at Ama Ghar would be able to achieve whatever they aspired to if they put enough effort into it, he said yes.
I also think the kids are extremely lucky to have Bonnie, a middle-aged woman (I'm horrible with names, sorry!) and Besh the former being the figure that oversees everything and the latter being the accountant. All are very positive, calm-inducing and reassuring individuals who really put their hearts into what they do at Ama Ghar, that much is evident almost immediately.
The only thing that bothered me during my stay was the feeling of having been able to do more, in the sense that I always had to go and ask "Can I help with this? Can I help with that? What can I do?!" because there was never anything specific that I was asked to help with - other than those benches that needed painting! Though then I realized that this was in fact the sign of a functional organisation. It works because they don't necesitate the help, but where you offer it they'll certainly accept it with an appreciative smile.
I would also like to add that my rating is indicative, since the site has it strictly refer to expectations, yet I came to Ama Ghar without any expectations; I didn't know what to expect, that was one of the reasons for going there.

(edit: I have corrected some grammar errors, apologies for I did not proof-read initially.)

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

Ama Foundation is really doing an excellent job in providing underprivileged kids of Nepal with appropriate education, food, shelter, clothes and health related support. When my parents visited Ama Ghar in Godavari, Nepal, they mentioned it was very well managed and the kids living in Ama Ghar were happy, intelligent and friendly. I personally support a kid living in Ama Ghar and the experience has been nothing but amazing. It is a very well run charity organization and I could not recommend this organization more to people who are interested in making a difference in a kid's life by supporting them in any capacity possible.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I came to Ama Ghar expecting that the chidren would barely speak English and the conditions would be rough. I was pleasantly surprised to find the children all understand and speak English (well) and that they are in a spacious and caring environment. Ama Ghar has a huge home, allowing each age group and gender its own designated area to sleep and play. The surrounding fields and mountains provide an idyllic and serene setting for the children to be in, away from the chaotic bustle of the city. The meals are healthy and hearty. The children are taught discipline through inclusion in house chores and study time. Ama Ghar focuses on each child's needs, and this is evident in each child's progress and attitude. The children and teens of Ama Ghar are well adapted, smart, social, self-sufficient and overall happy. I was so pleased to see that there are places like Ama Ghar that allow a child to be defined not by where they came from, but where they are going. I hope that I have the privilege to return to see how the children and teens have progressed. This is truly one of the best homes for children I have seen and I hope that Ama Ghar sees many more children through their life.

Rob_16

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have served Ama Foundation in multiple capacities over the past seven years and will continue to support for years to come because I know that every dollar is contributing to the health, education and welfare of beautiful, talented and loving children at Ama Ghar. There is nothing more self rewarding in this world than to help someone that is less fortunate succeed in life.

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

This organization is small but impacts so many, including the young, innocent children of Nepal. Every penny raised is put to good use. The children of Ama Ghar are so appreciative of what they have. That giving spirit has enabled them to want to give back to their own Nepalese communities. I am proud to be part of such a wonderful organization!

Read more

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Words cannot express how grateful I am to the Ama Ghar family for the life-changing experience I had while living with them for about five months in 2008. From a personal side, I am appreciative to have been part of a loving, engergetic, close-knit, and hard working family. During my time in Nepal, I was writing my graduate thesis, compiling case studies on orphanges in Kathmandu. Ama Ghar far exceeded the quality and care of any other children's home that I visited. Due in large part to the direction of Bonnie Auntie, the children's needs are met in all aspects - physical, emotional, and cognitive. They are challenged to be better citizens, and the best brothers and sisters they can be to each other. I have no doubt that each of these children will go on to make an incredible impact in the world.

Patricia84

Donor

Rating: 5

Ama Ghar has established a safe, loving home environment for the children they serve. I have visited Ama Ghar three times over the years and have come away with incredible respect and love for not only the children, but also the staff and organization. This organization not only provides a real loving home for the kids, but also fosters and encourages each child's engagement and responsibility to their local community they live in. Their leadership and commitment to the community instils a new found sense of belonging for each child and provides them with renewed confidence in themselves. Their personal importance among their Ama Ghar brother and sisters, as well as teachers, mentors and surrounding community jetisens them into creative, loving, educated and confident young adults. They have a home that nurtures their emotional development, growth and leadership through the caring and loving staff, donors, and many diverse volunteers. They are becoming incredible young adults through their real family and education at Ama Ghar. They each have a name and a personality that are forever etched in your heart with a single visit to Ama Ghar.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have visited this home numerous times, over the course of a decade. As I write this, I realize that it has been far too long since i have been back to spend time with the kids there. I am missing all of them! I love the dedication of the staff--most of them have been there for over 7 years, and the managing director, Bonnie Ellison, is a tireless advocate who has dedicated her life to the children and the mission of the foundation. The children are well-cared for, loved, and have created their own amazing brand of family. They are provided unique opportunities, as their doors are open to the world, but, they also live in the real world (one might call that rural, impoverished Kathmandu valley) and maintain a strong sense of their culture. I cannot wait to bring my son there to witness this extraordinary place.
Be forewarned: once you visit, you will want to extend your stay and come back over the years.

Donor

Rating: 5

I lived in Nepal (1955-1960) as a young person with my father who was there with US AID. Bonnie Ellison who runs Ama Gar now was there at the same time. As an adult she gave up a very successful professional career to go to Kathmandu and manage this amazing operation. Children, orphaned or who otherwise would die or live in grinding poverty are given a wonderful, rich and happy environment to grow and learn and have a bright future. They have no agenda other than seeing these children meet their potential. We support this organization with our donations knowing it will be responsibly and productively spent . What better good could you do with your donations than to save one child's life, or help many otherwise lost children achieve a happy future? These are good people...

Donor

Rating: 5

My daughter traveled around India volunteering at various orphanages, feeling very sad for the wan kids she encountered in indifferent and overwhelmed institutions and then ended up at AMA Ghar. She was ecstatic at the level of care the kids at AMA received- it seemed like it was in a different league from every other place. She had been despairing and it renewed her faith- every need of the kids was kindly and thoughtfully met. She found the kids very social , cheerful, well- educated and intelligent - not the usual experience with traumatized kids in An institution . She and I couldn't get over how amazing the care was that these kids receive.