Novak Foundation

The Stephen R. Novak Foundation

Creating Hope, Making a Difference

This Foundation was created in memory of the founder of Far East Handicrafts, Steve Novak (1967 – 1995). Steve founded the company in 1988 after traveling to the Far East. He became especially fond of the people of Nepal and began to import native handicrafts and Tibetan Buddhist ritual items.

Over the years, close friendships were established with the craftspeople and Steve saw many opportunities to sponsor projects which would contribute to the health and well-being of the Nepali people.

After Steve’s sudden death in an accident in an abandoned mine in Idaho, we at Far East Handicrafts have continued and expanded these projects in the spirit in which Steve began them. This separate, non-profit foundation was created to provide a means for people to give tax-deductible contributions to the many projects of Far East Handicrafts in Nepal.


Our Foundation sponsors a hill tribe school, the Shree Mahankal Primary School. Their first obvious need was simply for school supplies: books, paper, pencils, etc. But the bigger need was for a new location. The school was located near a small stream that became swollen with heavy monsoon rains each spring that washed out its banks and threatened the school. A new location, on higher ground farther from the stream, was found and a new school has been constructed.

We believe that education is of the utmost importance in Third World countries. Just being able to read and write in their own language gives children the opportunity to rise above the poverty and toil of their parents and countless previous generations. Education in Nepal is provided by the government through grade four. Then most girls drop out and very few families are able to send even their oldest son for more education.

In 2003 we began a scholarship program so the graduating 4th grade students can continue their education at a near by village school (grades 5-10). In that year we had our first girl, Lalita, graduate 4th grade. The next year there were three girls and the year after that there were four. The most positive impact you can make on poverty is through education, especially women and girls.

Through our “Adopt A Scholar” program you can pledge to provide funding for an aspiring young scholar for grades 5-10. $100 a year pays for all school fees, books, school supplies, school uniforms and shoes. On our first trip to the school in 1998, the villagers were literally crushed under the burden of poverty with little hope of that changing. Today there is a sense of hope that you see on the faces of the parents and children. The children are excited to learn. The older children are encouraging the younger children to study hard and some parents want to attend school too.

Please consider joining our “Adopt A Scholar” program and help provide hope for the future of a child. 100% of your tax deductible contribution goes directly to the scholars. Create Hope. Make a Difference.

Free Eye Care and Cataract Surgery

The Stephen R. Novak Foundation is a member of the Joy Foundation Nepal, which works in conjunction with the Tilganga Eye Centre of Kathmandu to provide free eye care and cataract surgery to the poorest of the people of Nepal living in remote regions where they cannot afford such care. Nepali doctors, nurses and technicians from the Tilgonga Eye Centre offer their time. The Joy Foundation provides food and shelter for the hundreds of patients that will walk for days with the assistance of family and friends to receive eye care. In a country where people must daily walk on steep and treacherous paths to get around, restoring a person’s eyesight truly gives them their life back and instead of being a burden, enables them to be a productive member of their family and tribe once again.


We absorb administrative costs, so 100% of all donations goes directly to projects in Nepal. Tax deductible donations can be made to:

The Stephen R. Novak Foundation
1107 E. 41st Ave
Spokane, WA 99203
Tel: (509)953-9083

Have something to say?

(No worries, we will keep your email safe! Also, make sure you fill in email and name fields before posting a comment.)