You have probably been following the tragic news from Nepal today and in recent weeks, and will be aware of the country’s dire need for support and aid. A huge humanitarian effort has now built up involving the UN, large aid organisations like Oxfam and Save the Children and many others. Nepal is a very difficult place in which to provide aid, with one limited international airport at Katmandu and then the challenge of reaching the hundreds of remote villages, most of which are accessible only on foot with little or no telecommunications. The focus at the moment is on getting the basics of shelter, food, water and sanitation and medical services to people. If you would like to know more, about the wider picture, daily updates are available from the humanitarian co-ordinators in Katmandu at:http://reliefweb.int/organization/un-rchc-nepal
Putting together a clear picture is a slow process, when communications and local institutions are destroyed, and people are struggling to survive. A real understanding of the extent of the devastation in Nepal is still unfolding. Yesterday the official death toll passed 8000 but the actual figure is likely to be much higher. No one has an absolutely clear picture of the situation which is developing day by day. Our partner charity Community Action Nepal has local people who are slowly finding out what has happened to the communities with which we work. You can find out more about this at their website, http://www.canepal.org.uk/ or following them on Facebook.
We already know that many of the areas in which we and our partner charities operate have been severely damaged. These include the Gorkha, Langtang, Kathmandu, Sindupalchowk and Helambu districts as well as the Solukhumbu. (with more reports coming in sadly today) We will be working together in these communities to help reconstruct their buildings, their lives and livelihoods. But before we start we need reports and most importantly we need time with the people affected to understand what their priorities are.
Your help – now and in the future
PPUK, IPPG and CAN and would like to thank all of our supporters for the donations we have received in the immediate aftermath of the earthquake. Collectively we now have people on the ground helping put those emergency funds to good use: supplying food; offering medical equipment; enabling transportation; and delivering shelter. This is part of the wider response to the immediate challenges facing Nepal.
Meanwhile, PPUK, IPPG and CAN are working together. We will have an important role to play in the reconstruction because of our long history in Nepal and contacts amongst the people there. We will be asking for your support in the coming months and years to help Nepal help itself. Please keep following us on our website and Facebook page.
PPUK and IPPG have always believed that empowerment is the key to making lasting change, and so with your help we will work to provide the Nepalese with the support and the tools they need to rebuild their lives.
Thank you for all your support,