“The Journey of Hope & Global Humanitarianism — Creating Paths and Building Foundations for Literacy and Education Worldwide is a man’s inspiring life story and testimony of a frontline aid worker who travelled far and near, to the corners of the world, finding his calling in helping those in need, and putting people back at the centre of the humanitarian aid sector. Young professionals will find plenty of practical advice for a career in the humanitarian sector, and the more experienced reader will see the wisdom in the stories, where the ability to inspire trust and build relationships matters more than millions of dollars. This book is truly an enjoyable read that will enrich your understanding of the humanitarian field and its challenges and benefits.” - Dr. Ali Buzurukov, Head of Accountability & Analysis Unit, Strategic Planning, Guidance and Evaluation Section, United Nations Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, NY

“Krishna KC is a manager/leader who is ahead of his time. Rare is the man who puts his life on the line for others. Yet KC is such a man, and his story is one of a life dedicated to the service of humanity. More than being just an extraordinary manager and a fearless leader, a fact that his 40 years of development work have proven, KC is a compassionate, selfless human being who will face all odds to save precious lives. One can go to the best schools, which KC did, and yet remain ignorant of basic truths in life. KC lived the truth that he learned from life itself, from the environments he found himself in, from the people he worked with and worked for, and from events unfolding from day to day. The truth is that one’s life is best lived when it is lived for others. He learned life’s best lessons by living according to his beliefs and values.

During his career, he stood up for his principles when challenged and put to the test. KC fought even the most powerful to protect those who were oppressed and subjected to untold suffering. There were real dangers involved, even risks to his life, but he took whatever actions were necessary to get the job done. These acts of courage sprang out of his deep love for the people and communities he had vowed to uplift.

Before and long after KC was with us at the Asian Institute of Management (AIM), a pioneering international management school established for the purpose of developing socially responsible managers/leaders who will contribute to meaningful growth of Asian societies, he was filled with unwavering idealism and a very strong spirit of service.

His fulfilment in life was from serving in international humanitarian organizations operating from a strategic vantage point, to address long-standing issues of poverty-deliverance, democratic governance, collective respect for peoples’ cultures and diversity, and the protection of women, children, and other vulnerable sectors. We, the faculty at the AIM, glowed with pride when we learned that KC was awarded two gold medals by the government of Cambodia and Sudan for outstanding performance in the realm of rebuilding communities in newly emerging societies, which were then just rising from years of internal strife. More than the two shining medals, we know that what gives KC great joy is the realization that he can hand over his contributions, experiences, and knowledge to the next generation of development workers. Those who will come after him will be inspired to do as he did: stretch themselves beyond their limits and achieve their dreams with bravery and courage of conviction. Through this book, KC will keep his story of courage and action alive in the hearts of all those who will follow the path he has taken: to serve humanity to the utmost possible best.” - Prof. Soledad A. Hernando, Ph.D., Professor, Asian Institute of Management, AIM, 8 August 2020

“I have known Krishna KC for many years as a tireless person who is always keen to share his time and talents in community work and worthwhile projects. This energetic and fun-loving man is a familiar face to many residents of our Scarborough community in Toronto, Ontario. Krishna’s book, Journey of Hope & Global Humanitarianism – Creating Paths and Building Foundations for Literacy and Education Worldwide, offers us a glimpse into another side of Krishna. In it, he shares his early passion for education and his dedication to help others, especially those in impoverished communities, to gain access to it. Krishna also delves into the work of organizations such as the UN and INGOs, which through the decades provide for the socio-economic needs of marginalized people around the world. For those who long to take a career path in education or social work, I hope that you find some inspiration in these pages.” - Salma Zahid, Member of Parliament, Scarborough Centre, Canada

“The Journey of Hope & Global Humanitarianism – Creating Paths and Building Foundations for Literacy and Education Worldwide is one man’s inspiring journey towards his life purpose, helping others unleash their potential through education. As the book unfolds with Krishna KC’s professional journey, it quickly becomes clear that empowering the vulnerable takes more than financial investment; it requires vision 246 | www.humanitarianbook.ca and the boldness to pursue it, as well as an uncompromising belief in the human ability to learn, develop, and grow. This book is incredible— priceless wisdom from a man who has walked the walk. A must-read for any person wanting to serve their community, and provide the guidance for the next generation to thrive.” - Former Chief of Education, UNICEF Sudan and currently Sr. Education Specialist, World Bank

“Diving into Krishna KC’s book, “The Journey of Hope & Global Humanitarianism – Creating Paths and Building Foundations for Literacy and Education Worldwide,” is a trip through the growth of literacy, education, children’s rights, and development efforts around the world. He introduces us to his earliest educational experiences, and then how he transitioned from being a teacher to becoming a leader fighting for literacy, fundamental basic rights to education, privacy, health, and other opportunities in countries throughout the world. His journey demonstrates how critical education and development is at any age. Throughout his Testimonials | 247 time working on training others and expanding literacy, educational, and development opportunities, Krishna continued to find ways to further his education. Plus, Krishna demonstrated how important education was by giving his children opportunities to pursue their education. Krishna is a global citizen who is known as being very reliable and trustworthy, as well as being a dependable manager. It is a book that brings a unique perspective to a challenging global issue.” - Sigmund Karlstrøm, Director, Save the Children in Albania and Resident Representative, Save the Children in Cambodia; Oslo, Norway


A friend and former colleague of mine, Krishna KC, has written his autobiography. He honored me with a request to write the foreword for his book. So I wrote about the difficulty of breaking out of rural poverty and actual realities of work in international development as per the below. Did I get it right? In either case, Krishna’s book is an excellent read for all with an interest in international development. Good luck with it!

We all have much to learn from KC’s book. Enjoy the read!

Terje Thodesen,

Former Director for Emergency Operations, UNICEF- Pakistan

International humanitarian work encompasses many worlds: the world of the remote primary schools and health posts; the world of the government ministries and departments; the world of the crowded hospital wards, the pit latrines, the literacy classes held in darkness with only a kerosine lantern to read by. The high-ceilinged, fan-cooled rooms, the crumbling guesthouses, the 5-star hotels, the tents of refugee camps. Most workers in this huge, complex field find their comfort zone and work in it for a career. Many feel a strong dichotomy between the offices, the strategic plans and budgets, the donor presentations and, on the other hand, the shining eyes of a child given a new book, or a new mother comforted with her safely-delivered baby. Few are those who inhabit all these settings with aplomb and who maintain steadfastly a view of the ultimate goal: meeting the needs of the most vulnerable – all the needs of all the vulnerable. This book: The Journey of Hope and Global Humanitarianism by Krishna KC is the memoir of one such person.
I knew Krishna when we were twenty-something, newly assigned field workers in the hills of Nepal. We were brash, we were committed, we were delighted to be working in a place where we had free rein to try out our theories and to work hard to bring our and others’ dreams to fulfillment. We spent our days discussing all the ramifications of this action plan or that strategic goal, and our nights passing on the skills of teaching adults to read in their own language – an ability that had been closed to them all their lives. This book brings those days back to life and witnesses to a person who never lost that clear focus on meeting need or that heady delight in the privilege of being a part of it all.
Many of us who go into the humanitarian field with the hope of making a difference for suffering people soon find ourselves “stuck” in offices, where field operations manuals, diversity training, committee reports and hosting donors seem to pull us away from the “real world” where the need is. Krishna reports that he was fairly early in his career “promoted” to such positions, but he never seems to have lost sight of how these very activities are going on to make a direct impact where they are needed. I was fascinated by his constant theme that operations manuals, financial management training, and teamwork building exercises were always expected to have a direct impact on better service to the most vulnerable. “Certain subjects were compulsory for all staff, such as building common ground about the organization, policies, children’s rights, women’s rights, communication, planning, participatory approach in planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation, and so on.” Hope is his keynote, and Krishna never forgets that hope no matter how high the stack of paperwork on his desk.
He documents his inevitable encounters with egotism and arrogance, with poor management and incompetence, with unpunished crime and unchecked power, but these are not occasions to describe grievances, he just reports and moves on. On the contrary, what Krishna dwells on in all his stories are the people who worked hard for the children, who were eager to learn and improve their skills, who became friends in spite of all their differences.
The book is organized chronologically, with ten chapters, each about a different country, different employer or different role. There are only a few jumps backward or forward, for the most part the author conducts us through his life as it happened. For some readers, this chronological focus may feel somewhat repetitive, as the same themes, the same patterns, the same successes and failures recur in each new place. Others may appreciate how the themes deepen over time and how experience gives new perspectives on a basically similar set of difficulties faced by children and women worldwide.
As an educator, his career has been focused on teaching, both in-school and out-of-school, as well as various types of staff training and development programs, but Krishna’s story clearly illustrates how all the “sectors” are woven together in the lives of the people impacted. Education, while a passion, never becomes a be-all-and-end-all of development work. Rather, education programs can be the beating heart of a community focused program with other activities like water and sanitation, agroforestry and transport benefiting in turn.
Krishna says in his introduction that he is writing this book for young people who want to enter the field of humanitarian work and learn about it, but I believe that this book will be a help and an inspiration to people at any stage of their career. Reading it gave me energy, mostly retired as I am, to start a new training program myself and find another way to serve.


Nancy Molin Longatan

Consultant. Former Director, Andhi Khola Project, Nepal, New Trainee in Bible Translation (hill tribes of Northern Philippines). August 9, 2022.

Hope & Global Humanitarianism: Creating Paths and Building Foundations for Literacy and Education Worldwide by Krishna K.C. and Raymond Aaron has two intertwined stories. One describes almost 40 years of international aid and community development work and the other tells of Krishna K.C.’s personal journey from a rural hill farm in Nepal to a long and successful career working with a number of international non-government organizations in 20 or so countries.

These two story lines are the foundation for the author’s main purpose:  to inspire, inform and guide those who are exploring work in the international community development field. Krishna richly fulfills this purpose. Give this book to anyone interested in working internationally. 

Some perspective–book reviewers usually do not refer to authors by their first names. This review is an exception because back in 1982, when Krishna began to work with the United Mission to Nepal (UMN), I was already working in non-formal education with UMN’s Community Development Assistance Project (CDAP). After three years of working together, I watched his plane head off to the Cody Institute in Canada, Krishna’s first international adventure. 

This book would benefit from another round of editing to remove some repetition and to highlight particular insights with bulleted lists or charts. But don’t let this critique stop you from taking in the history and wisdom available in Hope & Global Humanitarianism. It is a useful career guide to international work–wherever a person is from and wherever they hope to go.

Of course the times keep changing–new health challenges, internal and external disputes and conflicts plus climate change continually influence global needs and global responses. But what remains the same is the fundamental importance of communication, respect and humbleness whatever the culture in which we live and work. This book honours and models these values. 

Kathy Horton

Education and community development work, retired , United Mission to Nepal, Social Work Institute in Nepal, Coady Institute, Philippines program (Master’s), individual contact who are, or have been,  involved with church-related international work

The Journey of Hope & Global Humanitarianism

Creating Paths and Building Foundations for Literacy and Education Worldwide

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