Tanka Subedi with his wife Poonam

We are delighted that Tanka Subedi has recently joined INF Nepal in the role of Director – Community Programmes. As well as overseeing INF’s Community Health and Development work, Tanka will be part of INF’s Strategic Management Team so it is an exceptionally important position.

Tanka is married to Poonam and they have two daughters, Shristi (18) and Abha (11). Shristi has profound visual impairment, so Tanka brings personal commitment, as well as years of experience, into his role of supporting inclusion and empowerment of poor and marginalised people.

Tanka has completed a Masters in Sociology and a Master of Public Administration. The INF Australia team interviewed Tanka about his background and hopes for the role.

Please tell us a little about your background.
I was born and grew up in a traditional Hindu priest family in the eastern hilly district of Khotang, Nepal. My father wanted me to be a priest like him but I had a dream to become a teacher. In the course of my education, God opened the door for salvation at a time when it was tough for many new Christians due to persecution.

I worked in church relations, magazine editing and Gospel literature promotion before becoming involved in community development work. For a number of years I worked with World Vision International Nepal in various locations and roles, working for the well-being of poor and marginalised communities. After finishing there I worked as a free-lancer to help organisations become more effective in community empowerment, organisational development, disaster management, child protection, and more.

Why were you interested in working with INF?
To serve in this role is an exact match for me. I will have an opportunity to serve the needy people of Nepal working with an organistion that has the same core values that are mine too.

I am looking forward to bringing my knowledge, skills and experience to INF to promote values by deeds. Also, the presence of so many committed, experienced and devoted staff, board and expatriates in INF will really help me grow and develop.

What do you hope to achieve & what challenges do you think you will face?
Developing a common vision among leadership that is able to formulate, implement and measure achievements of a new strategy that matches with Government priorities, donor expectations in the global context and reaches out to the real needs of people of Nepal is my challenge and it is also an opportunity for leadership in INF. In working on this, I really want to create trust and promote a culture of prayer, as without it we can’t do anything merely by having knowledge, skills or academic degrees.

You’ve only been in the role for one month, what have you seen and done in that time?
Though it is still early, I feel that I have been able to grasp all about INF’s long history, which is a very emotional as well as spiritual journey. After visiting almost half of the operational areas within the last few weeks, I can sense what INF wants to achieve through its community work.

Still, I need to get a closer look at some mountainous operational areas in western Nepal. We are focused on down trodden people and are able to create hope, but we need to be proactive and specific about what to do and how to do it.

Your prayers are appreciated around this.