On 25th April 2015, a devastating 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Nepal, resulting in loss of life and massive destruction of homes, schools, health facilities and general infrastructure.
In the immediate aftermath of the disaster, we focused on emergency relief aid, delivering tarpaulins, corrugated metal sheets, foam mattresses, soap and essential food supplies to communities off the beaten track where everything was lost and no help from the larger organisations forthcoming. We also ran mini health clinics in each village we visited, alongside education sessions on the importance of health and hygiene best practice and how to make a simple drop-pit toilet in the hope of stopping open defecation.
We then moved on to the next phase, focusing on education and started building temporary classrooms from tin sheets and reclaimed materials to replaced those destroyed in the quake. This enabled children to continue with their education in a safe environment and regain a sense of normalcy in this time of upheaval and uncertainty. We also provided school uniforms, books, bags, pens and pencils for the children.
According to the Nepal Ministry of Education’s assessment, as many as 8,620 schools were affected, while 19,692 classrooms were entirely destroyed, 11,935 classrooms were majorly damaged, and another 17,434 had minor damage.
We are now focusing on rebuilding permanent classrooms and rural health posts one school and community at a time.