Ten Friends is a dynamic, non-profit organization dedicated to improving lives in the 3rd world with simple, hands–on projects that make a big difference to people in need. We invite you to visit all of the links in this site or contact us to get a complete picture of what we are doing, and how you can become a “Friend” of Ten Friends. We are a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and all donations are tax-deductible.
Our Work and Philosophy…
We work predominantly in Nepal – among the poorest countries in the world. One of the beauties of the Nepali culture is its simplicity – fancy homes, material items, and excess are seldom seen. Nepali people value family, religion, education, and basic needs like food, sanitation, shelter, clean drinking water . . . and a cup of tea with a friend. Our goal is to provide those basics so our projects focus on assistance that the Nepali people need – not what we think they need based on our culture or religion. Before we begin any project, we always ask, “Is this something you need and can use?”
We believe in helping others and that this act of service provides significant value to all parties. One of the most exciting things for us is to hear high school students who have traveled to Nepal on a Ten Friends work project tell us their career paths have changed as a result of the experience. For others who are not able to travel to Nepal, they are nonetheless able to find inspiration from children who are persevering in an orphanage or completing their education against all odds!
Ten Friends began when two Sisters High School teachers (Mark LaMont and Rand Runco) and eight of their friends spent the summer of 2006 in Nepal. Inspired by both the people they met and the communities they encountered, they returned to the US that fall asking themselves what they could do? Thanks to the encouragement and support of friends and many generous donors, Ten Friends was launched and it has grown and evolved over the years, now engaging hundreds of people from countries around the world.
In the beginning, Ten Friends founders traveled to Nepal most summers, sometimes taking high school students or friends as volunteers. Our very first project was delivering stretchers to villages along the trekking paths near Mt. Everest so that injured or sick villagers could be carried safely to hospitals. From that first project, other charitable opportunities arose and Ten Friends began supporting sanitation, literacy (libraries), sponsorship of orphanages and education.
Ten Friends recognizes the human impact of economic hardship throughout the world. Our values are cultural respect, human dignity, increased quality of life, and environmental preservation. We are especially concerned with the many challenges faced by children. These values guide us as we seize opportunities to empower less fortunate people and enrich their lives. We all share a collective responsibility and together, with friends, we are prepared to act now.
“I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything; but still I can do something; And because I cannot do everything I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.”
Edward Everett – U.S. Secretary of State, 1852
“If each of us tells ten friends about what is needed…and each of them tells ten friends…and each of them tells ten friends…then what we can accomplish has no limits. That’s the power of Ten Friends!”
Ten Friends Motto