The production of handicrafts continues to be our mainstay both in terms of activity as well as its source of income.

To date, the Centre has been exporting to 36 countries all over the world.

Some of the traditional items are Tibetan carpets, thankas, wood carved items like
folding tables, frames, wall hangings, metal items like bronze and copper pots, prayer wheels
and leather items such as gents and ladies boots and shoes.

Late Mrs. Deky Doklar Thondup
Founder President
Tibetan Refugee Self Help Centre, Darjeeling

Our Beloved Founder President, Lhacham Kusho Mrs. Deky Dolkar Thondup, wife of Gyalo Thondup (elder brother of H. H. The Dalai Lama), who conceived the idea of this Tibetan Refugee Self Helf Centrea and having establised it on the 2nd of October 1959, worked selflessly and with utmost devotion not only to make this Centre a successful and enduring venture in the service of the Tibetan People, but also till the very end in 1986, bestowed her genuine love, care and guidance to all the members of this community from the very young to the very old and aged. All continue to benefit from her struggles and all remember her with deep gratitude and pray for the enternal peace of her soul.


The Tibetan Refugee Self-Help Centre was started on October 2, 1959. Following the dramatic escape of His Holiness the Dalai Lama during that period of mayhem, thousands of our fellow countrymen, leaving hearth and home, fled into neighbouring countries so they could live as free human beings. The overwhelming majority of the refugees had brought nothing with them apart from the clothes they wore and what little provisions they could carry with them as they began the long and difficult trek over the Himalayas