A backward community in Nepal needs immediate attention: The Musahar community


In June 2023, during my trip to Nawalparasi Nepal, an accidental encounter with the Musahar community triggered my research initiative. This backward and marginalized community, residing in the heart of the region, became the purpose of my investigation aimed at promoting a community which isn’t even provided with basic life needs, and their culture vanishing at a slow pace. This research aims to understand the challenges that hinder their well-being. The key findings, proposed interventions, and our roles as global citizens in the community are highlighted in this essay, aiming to appeal for urgent medical help and to preserve their culture.

I took a research initiative to explore their lifestyle by experiencing it. In my 23 days of staying with the Musahar community, I engaged with a total sample size of 986 Musahars. The methodology I used to interact was group interviews, meaningful interactions, and a 23-day period of observing and experiencing their daily lives. This diverse approach allowed for a fine understanding of their challenges and their ideologies regarding health. The research outcomes include alarming health misunderstandings and gaps within the Musahar community. A striking issue developed in the lack of proper health facilities, worsening conditions for those going through serious illnesses such as cancer, tuberculosis or normal illnesses. Equally concerning was the prevalence of stereotypical mindsets, where people valued traditional beliefs in witchcraft over seeking professional medical assistance. Many individuals, relying on the use of witch or wizard spells, spirits and fantasies were tragically dying due to lack of scientific methods and medical help. The research is aimed to lead to a call for change, emphasizing the urgent need to address this issue. The Musahar community’s lack of awareness regarding available medical resources, such as doctors, health posts, and hospitals, further worsened the depth of the problem.

Efforts must be concentrated not only on establishing better healthcare infrastructure but also on changing the traditional psychological mindset of people that hinder the access to medical services. My ongoing projects for the Musahar community seeks to implement tangible changes within the Musahar community. Collaborative efforts from NGOs, government bodies, and local communities are vital and would be of great help. Fundraising initiatives can contribute to the establishment of health facilities and educational programs aimed at eradicating or reducing myths surrounding health. Furthermore, volunteers, medical professionals, and educators can play a transformative role in bridging the awareness gap and facilitating sustainable improvements.

In conclusion, the condition of the Musahar community in Nawalparasi demands immediate attention and efforts from all sectors of society. This research serves as a clear call for action, urging all humans to come together to address the pressing health issues and societal challenges faced by the Musahar people. This community culture should be preserved because it is the pride of our country.

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