Nepal in brief
|Area:||147 181 km2|
|Population:||28 563 377 (2009)|
In April 2015, Nepal was hit by the most destructive earthquake in 80 years. With a magnitude of 7.8, it left almost 9,000 people dead and 22,000 wounded. 17 days later, a 7.3 magnitude quake struck causing more loss of life and destruction, and disrupting the just-started recovery operation. The earthquake completely destroyed nearly 600,000 homes across Nepal and damaged over 280,000 more. Just weeks after the earthquake, Nepal’s monsoon season began when treacherously narrow and winding roads are prone to frequent landslides. Many families left their villages, either because their houses were made uninhabitable or because of the fear that the earthquake-cracked was even more likely to collapse in landslides.
The significant forced and voluntary displacements led to the forming of spontaneous IDP sites where multiple families share small spaces. Living in communal shelters is challengning for everyone, but especially for women and girls who face risks of sexual abuse and difficulty maintaining personal hygiene. The compromised security of these settings makes women and girls more susceptible to trafficking and exploitation.
Adding to the struggle of earthquake survivors, political unrest in Nepal and the subsequent shut down of the Indian border, blocked cross-border trade and transportation of essential supplies, including fuel, food, medicine, and other relief items. The border crisis and resulting shortages compounded logistical challenges in reaching earthquake-affected populations, many of whom reside in remote, high-altitude areas and required urgent support to get through the winter.
In the immediate aftermath of the earthquake, getting basic and life-saving equipment to people in need was the top priority. A team of PIN experts was in Nepal just a few hours after the earthquake and started an emergency response to immediately provide this needed support. We provided materials for the construction of temporary houses in affected regions and basic supplies to people who were often left with nothing. PIN assumed a coordination role in Gorkha—the site of the earthquake’s epicenter—setting up and facilitating coordination between the district government, the UN, international and local NGOs, and private initiatives.
People in Need has been focusing on the renovation phase, primarily in the hard-to-reach mountainous regions of northern Gorkha in 2016. PIN prepared a complex programme, which includes helping vulnerable communities define their priorities for the reconstruction of key infrastructure in their communities. PIN’s Nepal team provides communities with counselling on how to carry out reconstruction work, and how to apply for funding from governmental programmes and other humanitarian organizations.
People in Need launched the fundraising campaign SOS Nepal in the Czech Republic, which has collected 1,401,161 USD. This aid is also possible thanks to the significant support from donors from the People in Need Club of Friends, The endowment fund of the Czech Public Radio, Department for International Development (DFID), European Commission Humanitarian Aid (ECHO), Catholic Relief Services (CRS), International Organization for Migration (IOM), Avast Foundation, and Vodafone.
People in Need deeply thanks all the donors who have made these aid efforts possible in Nepal.
For more information please contact:
Denisa Bultasová, People in Need’s Nepal Programmes Coordinator, + 420 777 257 960, Denisa.Bultasova@peopleinneed.cz
Petr Drbohlav, People in Need’s Regional Director for Asia, +420 724 329 285 Petr.Drbohlav@peopleinneed.cz