Jabchor Tshogpa - Harnessing The Power Of WeChat To Help The Needy In Bhutan

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Nima Tshering is a keen advocate of social media - which if used meaningfully, could make a difference in society.

(Source: Kuensel)

 

By Nim Dorji Kuensel

While social media has often been blamed for causing some problems in society, a group in Trongsa is making the most of it.

Called Jabchor Tshogpa, a WeChat (a social media App) group with 265 members has taken the responsibility to help the disadvantaged and the needy.

How does Jabchor Tshogpa work?

It has been two years since the group was created. Members will contribute a minimum of Nu 100 every month to support the people and the contributions are voluntary.

Nima Tshering, the mastermind behind the group said that every month, on the auspicious 15th day of the Bhutanese calendar, they will organise activities for charity purposes.

 

A village in Trongsa, Bhutan.

Photo: Facebook/His Majesty King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck

 

The target is mainly elderly people. Nima Tshering said that while some members deposited a year’s amount at one go, others contribute more than the minimum amount.

“Till now members have been very supportive, which allows us to sustain ourselves for two consecutive years” he said.

If any of the members find people who needs to be helped, they will report the case to the group for discussion.

Jachum, 72, is one of the beneficiaries. She claimed that she was abandoned by her daughter and son-in-law.

“They provided me with basic necessities for about two months,” she said.

After coming across her plight, the WeChat group leader and the Bje Gewog Tshogpa handed over the necessities.

“I am very grateful to the people,” she said.

Members use the assistance of the local leaders to identify and extend their help to the needy.

How did the group Jabchor Tshogpa get started?

Nima Tshering said that the idea first started with his family members.

 

Photo: Softonic

 

“It spread to friends and finally to a community of people who are willing to help,” he said.

The amount collected is deposited in a joint account created in the name of Trongsa Jabchor Tshogpa.

“All the accounts and work done are updated in the group chat to keep members informed,” said Nima Tshering.

If the membership increases, the group is planning to construct shelters for the beneficiaries. 

According to Nima Tshering, with the current membership, the fund collected is only enough to buy ration, cloths and for giving out some cash.

“Sometimes, there are three to four people to be helped in a month, so the amount has to be divided.”

A member of the group said that she joined the group because it was created for a good cause. “As a single person, we cannot help even if we want to but in a group, our small contributions can help,” she said.

Meanwhile, the tshogpa is planning to extend its support to needy people in other dzongkhags(districts).

Nima Tshering is a keen advocate of social media - which if used meaningfully, could make a difference in society.

“If used for good purposes, WeChat is good for such initiatives”.

 

This article first appeared in Kuensel and has been edited for Daily Bhutan.

 

 

 

 


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