Supporting the Tibetan College of Traditional Studies of Singhkry Monastery, Tibet

Project location: CHINA, Tongde
Project start date: December 2013 - Project end date: December 2014
Project number: 2013-023
Beneficiary: Associazione Per La Solidarietà Internazionale in Asia

Project timeline: From September 2013 to March 2015

The project intended to improve the access to Tibetan traditional education through the empowerment of Singkhri Monastery College and the printing of the gSung bum of Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche, in order to offer young Tibetan monks and Tibetan students the possibility to learn and practice the traditional knowledge and the original teachings of Tibetan culture.
The protection of the cultural heritage in Tibet is at high risk due to the economic and social influence of the Han majority and the strict governmental policies that strongly limit the fundamental rights of the Tibetan population in the western regions of China. The overall goal is to safeguard the rights and the culture of the Tibetan people from the severe menaces of complete extinction.

Activities implemented

Increased accommodation opportunities within the College of study for students who are poor or from remote areas.
ASIA started to work in this monastery since 2011. In 2012, the first three dormitories and the classrooms building are completed. In summer 2013, a fourth dormitory realize.
The two last dormitories, has been completed in September 2014.
An Italian architect, Marco Dimiziani, working for ASIA, since 2000, prepared the drawings using bio climatic technologies. The Xining Engineering Company, prepared the structural designs.
All the buildings are reflecting the traditional design and colors typical of the local religious institutions of Tibet.
The contract has been signed with the winner of the previous tenders for the construction of the classes and dormitories buildings, the Qinghai Huaxia Construction Company of Guide.
During the monitoring, all the works controlled, indications given to the builder to improve the ongoing activities, and interviews to evaluate the level of satisfaction of the beneficiaries have been hold with the monks responsible of the college.
The two dormitories have been completed and equipped and the monks are using them
In front of the dormitories a cement pavement has been lay down and the enclosure wall and the main gate has been constructed
The quality of the works is very good and the solar heating system (trombe walls, insulation, and double glasses windows) is working very well and the rooms are warmer than the other rooms built by the monastery.
The life conditions for the students have been strongly improved and now the college is fully functional.

Accommodations fully equipped

All the rooms have been handover to the monks whom are using them. Basic equipment has been provided by the monastery while the monks brought from their home some of the equipment and furniture
In particular, the monastery provided for each new room beds, mattresses, quilts, stove, and bookshelves.
The college is now working full time because all the facilities have been completed and hand over to the monastery.


Monastery library improved and better organized

Regarding this activity, ASIA received in December 2013 a letter in Tibetan in which the monastery was requesting the following

"Dear ASIA, First of all, I would like to extend my deepest appreciation on behalf of our monastery for the successful project. In addition, I am kindly writing to plead if you could provide instead of the computers foreseen in the project budget approved, some electronic equipment for the final examination that we are holding each year. The equipment we are asking are: 4 amplifiers, 7 wireless and cable micro phones, one pair of loudspeaker, one stage where to hold the exam, 8 Tibetan style chairs, 30 monastery flags, 2copies of Deger Bka' 'gyur and Bstan agyur, and one copy of Snga 'gyur bka' ma. All these items which we have mentioned above cost 40,000 RMB. The monastery, however, can afford to pay 20,000 RMB, the 50 percent of the total cost, and we would be very grateful if ASIA could support the rest 20,000 RMB. Thanks very much for your time and consideration, Sincerely, Sangkri Monastery,2013.12.13"
After having checked that the library does not need the equipment foreseen in the project approved, ASIA agreed to approve the request from the monastery.

Important texts on Tibetan Medicine, Yantra Yoga, Shang Shung History, pre - buddhist Culture and Dzogchen spread among schools, universities and monasteries of Qinghai
During this period, all the texts to publish have been collected and given to the Qinghai publishing house.
Due to the very strict rules of the Chinese government in releasing the authorization to print this collection of Tibetan books, delay has been accumulated by ASIA and for this reason a neutral extension of the project was requested to the Nando Peretti Foundation.
The books were printed in March 2015.

Conclusion

All the activities have been achieved smoothly and with a great satisfaction from all the beneficiaries. The local people and the monastery are extremely happy of the results of the project and many new students are requesting the college to enroll them. The builder selected has been extremely professional; the participation of the monastery has been very active.

The Singkhri monastery has become, thanks to this project one of the most important monastery and college of all Qinghai, strengthening the spiritual legacy of the Tibetan people.

The Qinghai Publication house is the best Tibetan publication house of Qinghai and this collection of books will enormously help the Tibetan Culture to spread among the new generations and help to safeguard it within the Tibetan generations.


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