READ Nepal

About Us


Advisory Board


Ms. Sanjana Shrestha, Country Director
Sanjana has been with READ Nepal for nine years and has served as Country Director since January 2009. Prior to READ, Sanjana was a Project Coordinator and Researcher with the Manushi for Sustainable Development organization in Nepal. Sanjana was also involved in project evaluation work in various organizations such as Save the Children US, Winrock International and German Technical Cooperation. Under Sanjana’s leadership, READ has been the driving force behind the strengthening of the Nepal Community Library Association (NCLA), which helps READ Centers advocate and lobby for rights. Sanjana’s expertise and facilitation skills have been critical in expanding the READ model to India and Bhutan. Sanjana serves as the READ Global representative for Beyond Access, a joint initiative of organizations working to raise awareness of the powerful role that libraries can serve as hubs for economic and social change. Recently, Sanjana received a Nomura Centre CONFINTEA scholarship from the UNESCO Institute of Lifelong Learning (UIL) to write an article based on empirical research showing the impact of sustainable community libraries. Sanjana was also appointed an advisory board member of Association of International Non- Government Organizations in Nepal (AIN) and has served as an International Advisory Board Member for the Access to Learning Award of The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. She holds Bachelor's and Master's degrees in humanities and social science from Tribhuvan University in Kathmandu.

Mr. Parshu Ram Pandey, Finance Manager
Mr. Pandey is the Finance Manager for READ Nepal. He also provides support on financial management and reporting for all READ affiliate countries. Parshu has extensive knowledge of accounting and tax principles of Nepal, as well as of accounting software used to maintain financial data and generate reports of private companies, NGOs and INGOs. He also provides financial expertise for project evaluation of INGOs for the Social Welfare Council (SWC). Prior to joining READ, Mr. Pandey worked for the Memorex Group of Companies, Hope Nepal, Mount Digit Technology, Sustainable Solutions, National Council of Churches of Nepal, and Practical Action. He also volunteered with the Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA) Nepal as a financial and computer technical advisor. Parshu has led several trainings – including a MoneyWorks accounting software training for the Nepal Red Cross Society, United Mission to Nepal, and several other private institutions, as well as a training program on QuickBooks jointly organized by READ Bhutan and Bhutan Foundation office in Bhutan.

Mr. Chhatra Bahadur Khatri, Business Development Manager
Chhatra has been working as Business Development Manager (BDM) for READ Nepal since September of 2012. Previously, he served as Monitoring and Evaluation Officer at READ for a year. Chhatra is responsible for assessing the sustainability capacity of READ libraries and sustaining enterprises; as well as identifying their risks and challenges. He provides technical guidance for business plans for sustaining enterprises and entrepreneurship development of community members for commercial and social enterprise promotion and livelihood improvement. Prior to joining READ, Chhatra worked with the Micro-Enterprise Development Program (MEDEP), a joint poverty reduction program of Nepal Government and the UNDP for over ten years where he held multiple positions such as Enterprise Development Officer, Program Assistant and Monitoring and Evaluation Officer. He also worked as Saving Credit Mobilizer in Local Governance Program (LGP) supported by UNDP. Chhatra holds a Master's Degree in Business administration (MBA) from the Tribhuwan University of Nepal.

Mr. Durgesh Kumar Yogi, Monitoring & Evaluation Officer
Durgesh joined READ Nepal in July of 2012 as Monitoring and Evaluation Officer. He is responsible for the overall monitoring and evaluation of READ Nepal, and provides support to READ India and Bhutan as well. Prior to joining READ, Durgesh worked with Partnership for Sustainable Development Nepal, UNICEF Nepal, and the District AIDS Committee of Dang. Durgesh holds a master's degree in public health from State University of Bangladesh and a bachelors in commerce from Tribhuvan University in Nepal.

Mr. Ashesh Acharya, Information Communications Technology (ICT) Program Officer
Ashesh joined READ Nepal as information communications technology (ICT) Program Officer in January 2014. He is responsible for READ Nepal’s ICT program design and implementation, including the creation of trainings, conducting community surveys, and monitoring & evaluation and project reporting. He has eight years’ extensive professional experience in ICT, information management and mass media. Prior to joining READ, Ashesh worked for Plan International Nepal as the ICT Coordinator. He has also worked with UNHCR, the National College of Computer Studies (NCCS) and Antenna Foundation Nepal. He holds master’s degree in Rural Development, and a bachelors in Information Management from Tribhuvan University of Nepal.

Ms. Pushpa Bhadel, Admin Officer
Pushpa has served as the Admin Coordinator for READ Nepal since May 2008. She is responsible for overall administration, human resource management and coordination in the READ Nepal office. Pushpa has written extensively on international development and made presentations at numerous conferences on a variety of topics concerning rural and international development and gender studies. She holds a bachelor's degree in business from Tribhuwan University and a master's in rural development and gender studies from Purbanchal University in Nepal.

Mr. Chin Kaji Shrestha, Program Officer
Chin Kaji served as a volunteer in the Kathmandu office for over two years before joining READ Nepal as a Field Coordinator in December 2000. He is now Field Officer, spending most of his time in the field monitoring and supervising sites and providing technical assistance and training to librarians.

Mr. Raju Babu Shrestha, Program Officer
Raju served as a volunteer in the Kathmandu office for almost two years before joining READ Nepal as an Assistant Field Coordinator in January 2004. As a Field Officer for READ Nepal, his duties include training, monitoring, supervision and providing technical support to READ Centers. Raju holds a bachelor's degree and is working on a master's degree in sociology.

Mr. Saugat Bhattarai, Fundraising Officer
Saugat graduated from Hampshire College in the United States of America with a degree in Anthropology and Sociology. His responsibilities at READ Nepal include helping the Country Director raise funds through planning, written proposals, award letters and grant applications. Saugat has experience with persuasive writing as he has written for magazines in the past. His education in Anthropology and Sociology shows that he has an awareness of the issues of contemporary Nepal and he has faith in the promise of civil-society organizations and individuals to address these issues.

Ms. Sharada Maharjan, Admin and Finance Coordinator
Sarada is a Finance Assistant for READ Nepal. She is responsible for maintaining READ Nepal's financial and accounting needs, as well as assisting the Finance Officer. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Management and previously volunteered as a Financial and Administrative Assistant.

Mr. Arjun Maharjan, Information Communications Technology (ICT) Administrator
Arjun joined READ Nepal in July 2008 as a Program Assistant. From May 2010 until 2012, he acted as Field Supervisor. Currently, he is the focal person of READ Nepal for implementing ICT programs in READ Centers, for assisting the local ICT consultant, and for preparing ICT guidelines. Arjun has expert technical knowledge of computers, photography and video editing. He is pursuing a bachelor's degree in Business Studies from Tribhuvan University, Nepal.

Ms. Sushmita Lama, Program Assistant
Sushmita Lama joined READ Nepal as an intern in February 2012 and was promoted to Project Assistant in May 2012. She is responsible for preparing regular monthly reports, activity reports and the annual report, assisting in grant writing for projects to external donors as well as assisting the Country Director. Prior to joining READ, she worked as a Facilitator for three months for a school-based hand washing program for UNICEF and the National Health, Education, Information and Communication Center (NHIECC) in Kathmandu valley. She holds a bachelor's degree in Microbiology from Tribhuwan University in Nepal and a master's degree in Microbiology from Bangalore University in India.

Ms. Devi Maya Rai, Office Aid
Devi is the READ Nepal Office Aid. She handles miscellaneous duties to ensure the smooth operation of the office.

Advisory Board

Dr. Mohan Man Sainju, Emeritus Board
Dr. Mohan Man Sainju is the Executive Director of the Institute for Integrated Development Studies (IIDS) and has served on the READ Nepal Advisory Board since its establishment. Previously, Dr. Sainju served as Ambassador to the United States from Nepal. He has also served as Planning Minister of Poverty Alleviation Fund and as Rector of Tribhuvan University.

Dr. Suresh Raj Sharma, Emeritus Board
A former teacher, Dr. Suresh Raj Sharma is presently the Vice Chancellor of Kathmandu University. He also serves as the Executive Director of the Council for Technical Education and Vocational Training. Dr. Sharma has served on the Advisory Board since READ Nepal's establishment.

Dr. Shankar Raj Pathak, Emeritus Board
Dr. Shankar Raj Pathak is the founder of Saraswati College in Nepal, and the Chairman of the Nepal Disabled Association. He has served as Vice Chancellor of Tribhuvan University, and Vice Chairman of the Nepal National Commission on Population. Dr. Pathak has served on the Advisory Board since READ Nepal's establishment.

Ms. Rita Thapa, Emeritus Board
Ms. Rita Thapa has spent more than 15 years initiating and supporting institutions related to women's empowerment in Nepal. Her involvement includes the establishment of small-scale entrepreneurial and service organizations, the management of gender programs for international NGOs, and service on boards of national and international women's support organizations. Ms. Thapa has worked with the United Nations Development Agency, Oxfam, and Agro-Forestry Basic Health Cooperative. In 1984, she founded "Women's Work,” Nepal's first wholly women-managed hand-knit project. Ms. Thapa has served on the Advisory Board of READ Nepal since 1995.

Mr. Hem Raj Gyawali, Advisory Board Member
Mr. Hem Gyawali is the president of Nepal Republic Media. He has served as a member of Kantipur and The Kantipur, the national newspapers of Nepal. Mr. Gyawali is a former civil servant and a writer and authority on the Hindu religion. He is a recipient of the Gorkha Daksin Bahu award from King Birendra for promoting journalism in Nepal. Mr. Gyawali has served on the Advisory Board since 1995.

Dr. Shanti Basnyat, Advisory Board Member
Dr. Shanti Basnyat is a Professor of English Education at Tribhuvan University in Kathmandu. She is the recipient of many academic awards, including a Fulbright Fellowship to the U.S. and the 1991 Education Award in Nepal. She has studied in the U.K. and in India and is an academic advisor and founding member of the Triyog Girls' School in Kathmandu. Dr. Basnyat has served on the READ Nepal's Advisory Board since 1996.

Dr. Nirmal Kandel, Advisory Board Member
Dr. Kandel is a medical doctor and public health specialist. He has served as National Program Officer in Communicable Disease Surveillance and Response for the World Health Organisation, Nepal. Currently he holds the position of Technical Officer, Avian Influenza for the World Health Organisation, Indonesia. Dr. Kandel has served on READ Nepal's Advisory Board since 2009.

Mr. Manohar Bhattarai, Advisory Board Member
Mr. Manohar Bhattarai’s experience in the IT domain spans more than two decades. Mr. Bhattarai currently serves as the Vice Chairman of High Level Commission for IT, an IT policy and strategy outfit chaired by the Prime Minister of Nepal. Mr. Bhattarai has wide ranging experience working both for the public and private sectors. He has served on READ Nepal's Advisory Board since 2009.

Mr. Rabindra Puri, Advisory Board Member
Mr. Rabindra Puri is an established architect who has worked with numerous NGOs and INGOs in the development sector. Early in his career, he worked on the restoration of the Patan Museum. He then redesigned a home that was later declared a Model House by the Bhaktapur Municipality. In 2004 he was awarded the Asia Pacific Cultural Heritage Award. He also received the UNESCO Award for his Model House Project of 2004- 2005. Mr. Puri has restored 30 old homes and built many new homes incorporating traditional Nepali styles. He holds a master's degree in development policy with distinction from Bremen University, in Germany. He also holds bachelor's degree in fine arts, commerce, law and humanities from Tribhuvan University in Nepal. Mr. Puri has been on READ Nepal's Advisory Board since 2010.

Mr. Bhola Kumar Shrestha, Advisory Board Member
Mr. Bhola Kumar Shrestha, Former President of Nepal Library Association, has known READ Nepal for 14 years. He has been helping READ with training programs and curriculum development for the training of READ staff. He has led various other associations and libraries of Nepal such as Regional Federation of South Asian Library Association (REFSALA), Kaisher Library, Kathmandu Valley Public Library and Nepal National Library. He holds a master's degree in Library and Information Science from the University of Delhi, India. Mr. Shrestha has served on READ Nepal's Advisory Board since 2009.

Ms. Era Shrestha, Advisory Board Member
Ms. Shrestha is an MBA graduate with a specialization in Human Resources Development, Cross Culture and Global Management and Organization Development (OD). Ms. Shrestha specializes in organizational review and assessments, OD interventions, strategic planning process facilitation and facilitation of development programme design and management. Ms. Shrestha also has professional experience in undertaking review, assessment, evaluations, research and studies. Ms. Shrestha has conducted several organizational reviews, capacity assessments, OD/Capacity development strategy development and facilitated strategic planning process including projects/programme design, planning, reviews and evaluations. She has also successfully coordinated, managed and facilitated several events such as international evaluation and fact finding missions, including workshops and seminars.