It is now a month since the first earthquake struck Nepal and Kathmandu residents are still sleeping outside. A few days ago we sent 30 more tents from Pokhara to the capital for families who desperately needed their own shelter. Aid is still held up at customs and we now hear stories of food donations from charities being sold at markets, plus the thousands of tents that have been given to Nepal have still not reached those who need them. Thankfully we have been able to directly help over 60 families in the capital with help from Ram in Pokhara and Balram in Kathmandu. This weekend the rainy season began, heavy rain and winds engulfed Nepal and for those sleeping outdoors their living situation is unimaginable.
Last week our team visited a village called Bhumlichowk in the Chepang area which urgently needed support. It is located two hours on foot from the roadside and the village is in a desperate condition. Most of its 90 homes have been destroyed and their food supplies crushed. This has been our biggest mission so far. Foods from a local supermarket were pre ordered with the help of the village chief, Ram and his friend Shirish. Ninety bags of rice, dhal, sugar, tea, oil and salt were bought. This was some supermarket sweep. The villagers met the vans by the roadside and helped transport the supplies to their homes by foot and cable car over the river. Each bag of rice weighed 30kg and some men incredibly carried two bags at once. Our Nepali friends in Pokhara have also been helping to raise money and have donated clothing something that is desperately needed as the Chepang community are very poor with many children scantily dressed.
The villagers were thrilled and surprised to meet Ram and Shirish. Enough food has been provided to feed its 600 residents for a month. Our original campaign was to help people rebuild their homes but when a village requires the basics in life to start their recovery, we need to provide primary support before we can offer anything else.
The sad end to this report is Bhrumlichok village was recently visited by an NGO (Non Government Organisation) who came offering aid armed with just one bag of rice and one tent to be shared between its 600 residents. No doubt this community would have been then signed off as ‘helped’. We are not an official charity or NGO but we are very proud of all that we are achieving, that is real aid for all the residents who need it and providing it as quickly as we can. All the money raised is going directly to Nepal without being syphoned off.
Thank you so much to Ram and Shirish for their endless work and thank you for your donations, especially to Orchard Primary School in Hounslow, Middlesex who had a fund-raising event last week and donated their proceeds to our cause.