August 3, 2007
The Zangskar Nuns Association (ZNA) was
founded to corrdinate and manage funding support from donor
organizations such as Gaden Relief Projects. The ZNA constitution,
which was read at this meeting, may be found here: Zangskar
Nuns Association Constitution. -Ed.
Location: Sani Kachod Ling
Purpose: This meeting was called
in order to explain the function of the Zangskar Nuns Association
(ZNA) to the delegates elected from each of the ten nunneries
in Zangskar as well as to impress upon them the importance
of keeping detailed accounts of the donations that they receive
from Kim Gutschow on behalf Gaden Relief.
Attendees: All nunneries were
notified of the meeting well in advance by letter or in person.
It is unknown whether Chumig Gyartse Namtak Choling received
notice as a result of their distant location. Meeting invitations
were regretfully not sent to the Secretary and Treasurer of
The following delegates were present at the
- Thuje Drolma, Karsha Khachod Grubling
- Tsering Yangskyid, Pishu Namgyal Choling
- <substitute delegate>, Zangla Byangchub
- Tundup Drolma, Rizhing Dorje Dzong
- Ngawang Drolma, Tungri Phuntsogling
- Kunzang Drolma, Sani Kachodling
- Dechen Palmo, Skyagam Phagmoling
Other attendees included:
- Skalzang Lhamo, ZNA President
- Jennifer O’Boyle, volunteer
- Lauren Galvin, volunteer
- A few additional nuns from various nunneries
The following delegates did not attend the meeting:
- Lobsang Palmo, Bya Dolma Choling –
all nuns from Bya were in Leh at this time for a teaching
- Lobzang Chosdzom, Chumig Gyartse Namtak Choling
– this nun lives in Leh and received a summary explanation
of the meeting in advance
- Dorje Drolkar, Manda Padma Choling –
this nun attempted to attend the meeting, but was unable
to find transportation
- Tandzin Palmo, Zangla Byangchub Choling –
this nun was in Leh during the meeting and another nun from
Zangla attended the meeting
11 A.M. – Delegates from Pishu, Zangla,
Skyagam, Tungri and Sani assemble to begin the meeting along
with Jennifer and Lauren.
Accounting and Receipts
Lauren explains that the nunneries must produce receipts for
Gaden Relief donations that they received in 2006 and give
them to Jennifer before she returns to the U.S. Lauren strongly
emphasizes the need for the nunneries to keep detailed accounts
and receipts in the future in order to not risk the loss of
Lauren describes the Canadian NGO, Gaden Relief, which donates
money to the Zangskar nunneries. She reviews the list of funding
priorities for the donations and summarizes the amount of
funding provided in the past.
New Donor Laws
Lauren gives a general explanation of the changes in
Canadian and American laws for donations sent to foreign countries
– money can only be donated to registered NGOs and receipts
must be retained to document how the money was spent. She
also explains that this is why Kim Gutschow has attempted
to establish the ZNA as a registered NGO in India so that
she can continue to provide money to the nunneries from Gaden
Relief. ZNA may also serve as a means for the nunneries to
obtain money from other sources, such as the government or
At the prompting of Jennifer and Lauren, the nuns have a brief
discussion about which nunneries have teachers and how they
are able to acquire teachers.
Distribution of Funds
Jennifer and Lauren suggest to the nuns a few different options
for distributing Gaden Relief donations in the future. This
discussion was prompted by an earlier discussion at Bya Dolma
Choling. The nuns at Bya felt that it was unfair for all nunneries
to receive equal shares of the funding when some nunneries
such as Bya are in need of many basic things and other nunneries
are well-established and do not require as much support.
Lauren explains that Gaden Relief donations
could be either divided up equally amongst the nunneries based
only on the number of nuns in residence as is the current
practice or the other option could be that only stipends are
distributed to the nunneries based on the number of nuns and
the remaining money will go in a general fund with ZNA. Nunneries
could then apply for this money for specific needs so that
in each year different nunneries would receive a different
amount of funding. The nuns in attendance agreed that the
later was an acceptable way to distribute the money.
1 P.M. – Delegates from Karsha and Dorje
Dzong, Skalzang Lhamo, and the interpreter arrive.
Lauren provides a review of the topics covered in the morning.
The interpreter reads the ZNA Constitution and the list
of donations distributed by Kim Gutschow in 2006. Emphasis
and discussions revolve around opening a bank account, establishing
a ZNA office, acceptable uses for the donated money, and the
role of the delegates and Executive Committee.
Each delegate is given 40 copies of the Gaden
Relief brochure to distribute to visitors and two envelopes
addressed to Kim Gutschow for future correspondence.
At a later date, copies of the ZNA Constitution
are made and distributed to the delegates.