Travel log – Chhaupadi in Rachuli – Kalikot – Karnali Zone – Nepal

Photographies made by the students of the participatory photography workshop #breakthesilence © of each student.


We have not yet found in Kalikot anybody referring to the tradition using this name, they call it “Chuii” “Chuiigoath” or “Chuiighar”. But as to existing, it does exist the same. Maybe the conditions seem better (in Rachuli, so do they think), because depending of the houses the women are in a separate “room”, on the lower floor. But it is usually an old cowshed without door or any safety measures. Some dispose of a bed, but those are the chosen few. The most usual is that they sleep in the shed on straw, next to buffalos and cows.

Kalikot is very different to Achcham, Karmali Zone is full of men, it is not like in Achcham where most of the men head of the families work in India. Here they work at home, and the traditions regarding the women are kept by them. Male chauvinism is even more present and noticeable than in Achcham.

We have held several conversations with fathers who said that they didn’t like what we were doing at the schools. That to explain that the girls, during their period, have to eat better and not to deprive themselves from dairy products, was against what the gods wanted and was absolutely no good.

At school we tried to teach class without giving out our opinion. When they explain that they don’t like going to the shed, the maximum we do is to have them thinking hard about what would happen if they wouldn’t. The ideal is that they reach the conclusion themselves that this, is a superstition.

What we actually did talk about in class is women’s rights, equality, of how not to let them enter a temple, for example, is a breach of human rights, as they are not allowed the freedom of worship and religion that men do enjoy.

The sensation remaining from Rachuli is that we have not been able to go deeper in this matter in this villaje. We haven’t been able to form a group of women, just the one of girls, because of the high amount of work they have at this time of the year, and we have got it clear that there are many things that the girls ignore.

In our next visit, we know that we have to do better. Now we know how the Karnali Zone works. It is clearer that, apart from the women and girls groups, we have to speak with the men. Would it be folly to prepare a workshop for them? Something to think about. Tomorrow, on our way to Chilkhaya! 🙂

Written by Clara Go. Photographies made by the students of the participatory photography workshop #breakthesilence © of each student.
Translated to English by Tere Salinero

West Nepal girls need this kind of program. And we need help to continue the project!

Now you can donate for paying one month salary to the nurse, or for some hygiene kit or for the menstrual cup control in September:

Or If you feel like it, you can donate via bank transfer at: Banc Sabadell IBAN: ES23 0081 0900 8200 0430 1934 BIC: BSABESBB (your recurring donation will help us have a better planning of our budget to carry out the projects undertaken).

Or take a look to others ways to donate in

Thank You! 🙂


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