Can you imagine being so passionate about a cause that you leave your own country, travel some 8,000 miles to an unfamiliar land and spend your last dollars to begin a dream to help children? My guest did just that. On the new The Women’s Eye podcast, I had the honor of catching up with the inspirational Maggie Doyne, cofounder of BlinkNow Foundation and Kopila Valley Children’s Home and School in Surkhet, Nepal, AND now published author!
The “mother” to over 50 young Nepali children just released her memoir titled Between the Mountain and the Sky: A Mother’s Story of Love, Loss Healing and Hope.
We have featured the former 2015 CNN Hero of the Year’s fascinating journey from New Jersey teen to Nepal entrepreneur several times on The Women’s Eye, so I couldn’t wait to talk about her very first book!
“There was so much more to the story that I felt was being left out,” says Maggie. She is grateful for the opportunity to share her truth but admits writing the book was emotionally grueling.
Between the Mountain and the Sky is a deeply personal account of how “one person decides to help another and, in the process, changes the lives of thousands, including her own.”
“I think that’s really the beauty of the story,” reveals Maggie. “I’m really proud of the work we’ve created [at Kopila] in the model for sustainable, community-based development, but it came with a lot of learning; a lot of loss; a lot of my own coming-of-age in Nepal, and the book is very much about that.”
Without spoiling too much, Maggie’s book is also a love story about her husband Jeremy, and their two children, Ruby and Everest. But even after 15 years and thousands of children, she admits she still loves parenting.
“I still think it’s the greatest gift in the world and it’s what I live for,” says Maggie. “I think that I’m very lucky I’ve gotten to see so many different dimensions of motherhood. Education is the great change maker and so many good things happen just from a simple investment in a child.”
Case in point: Hima, the 5-year-old girl breaking rocks by a riverbed who first inspired Maggie to start a Nepali home for children all those years ago. She is now at a university studying to become a chef!
Maggie says while the Kopila children are becoming doctors, engineers, educators and social workers, her work won’t be done until every child is safe, educated and loved.
“I think we can create a world like that,” says Maggie. “We don’t have to accept the status quo; we can go out and we can do something, one step at a time. One child at a time.”
If there is anyone who can make that happen, it’s Maggie Doyne. She believes we are at a turning point where we need to unite and figure out what is best for our children.
“I am looking towards a world that’s more peaceful and better for our children…you just look into the face of a child and know they’re worth fighting for. I think we can do better.”
To learn more about Maggie and her book:
Facebook: Maggie Doyne
Lead Photo: Maggie and children at Kopila Valley’s Children’s Home/Courtesy Maggie Doyne