It is almost two weeks since the earthquake and relief efforts are in full swing.
Dhurba and I have been to many areas in Bhaktapur, Kathmandu, Kavre and Sindupalchowk districts observing the situation on the ground. Many places have received aid in the form of tarpaulin sheets and rice, others have received lentils, salt, dry foods.
Not everything with the relief effort in Nepal has been perfect. There has been some duplication of aid, and a lack of overall government and local co-ordination.
Nagarhope has distributed relief foodstuffs, soap, sanitary pads, salt and clothes from our school in Sathikurya. All villagers say the same thing – we need tarpaulins. Or tents. Nonetheless, they were happing that some form of aid has started to trickle in. We are working in co-ordination with Village Development Committee (VDC) and keep a track of names and donated goods.
Water is vitally important. The swater supply to the villages around Nagarkot is generally ok. Most taps in the villages, even right after the jolt, have been supplying plentiful water.
As for disease, once the water is clean, the effects are minimal, biggest worry would be lack of adequate shelter and the oncoming monsoon season. Again, a priority need for tents and tarps initially, followed by matting, blankets and clothes.
Our school has suffered cracks to one side (above the kitchen, on both the 2nd and third floors. All other houses in the village have been severely damaged, our school is the one of two surviving buildings. Repair works will only happen after the monsoon season which ends in September, so we are looking into temporary classrooms (made from bamboo, clay and corrugated tin) until then.
Nagarhope plan to help the local Nagarkot Health Post which was badly damaged. A temporary health post is essential for the surrounding villages.
I havent been to all, but we can safely assume that most of the sponsor children’s houses have been either fully or partially destroyed, and either way are uninhabitable. The small room we were using for an office and tuition centre is cracked and also not fit to use in case of any accident. There seems to be nowhere to shift to now, but it is not as vital as say as opening the local schools.
Nirvana, where Dhurba stays was destroyed, but the restaurant above is still intact and safe. Since this will not function as a hotel anymore, i am assuming that Dhurba may use the restaurant part as a house. Dhurba has been relentless since the quake, helping wherever he can, through locals, police, villagers, or off his own back. He has never once thought of himself the whole time.
Of our 10 committee members, 2 have concrete houses which have no damage, the rest are all in the same boat having lost their house. This has also been a factor in not being fully operational , certainly for the 1st week anyway. The whole of Nepal didnt really move for a full 3 days, due to the 72 hour threat of aftershocks.
Anyone who’s house has completely collapsed are also without clothing and bedding. We have gotten donations of 2nd hand clothes in Tikathali where i live, 40 sacks in three days. I have printed up posters and hope to establish four collection banks in areas close to us where there is no damage. When and where the need arises to transport them to families affected in the village or the city, we will transport them. It is also a good way of keeping the victims in the minds of those who are really not that affected at all.
Another avenue we are looking into is health and hygiene – basically distributing masks, chlorine solution, bilching powder, potash (for clean water in areas, along with soap, sanitiser, sanitary pads. We have also discussed bringing some of these items to villages, and distributing some through the health post in Nagarkot.
All the regular school admissions and books and budgeting that was interrupted 13 days ago, will also go back into full swing. Students uniforms and bags have been buried under rubble, an extra push will be required to clothe them this year, on top of all the other things we are trying to deal with.
The government stats on todays paper say over 10% of houses in Nepal have been destroyed with the same percentage damaged. The impact is far and wide, and it will take years and years to rebuild and renew.
As you can see from the website, we are appealing to people to help our emergency earthquake appeal. People have been so generous already, and we really have to say thank you (Dhanyabad) to everyone for donating to this relief effort. We will do our absolute best to make sure the people in most need get the help and support they need, and promise to report back on the impact Nagarhope donations and efforts have already achieved and will achieve in the coming weeks and months.
Thank you all for taking the time to read this message. If you can support the appeal, please DONATE NOW and we promise to make your contribution reach those in need at this desparate time for Nepal.