Separated by over 14,000 kilometers, there’s not much similarity between land-locked Nepal and the earthquake ravaged island nation of Haiti except their proximity in the UN Human Development Index—Nepal (144) and Haiti (149)---but trust love to bridge distances.
Moved by the plight of Haiti quake survivors, members of Lovers Association, a private organization here are busy these days collecting funds from public on streets of Kathmandu to help affected children in Haiti.
“We have donated Rs. 10,000 from the ‘lovers’ coffer’ as an initial amount for the noble cause. We hope people would donate generously and we will be able to raise a sizeable amount,” said Abhit Pyakurel of Lovers Association.
The effort has found support from the Kathmandu chapter of Kidzee, one of India’s largest chains of kindergarten schools, and even FM radio stations and other private associations have pledged assistance.
Started on Wednesday, the drive would continue for 10 days where the public would be approached to donate for children in Haiti and also spread awareness on earthquakes among Nepali citizens.
The money collected would be handed over to the UN representative to Nepal to be forwarded to agencies involved in relief work in Haiti.
“I came to know about the unique and laudable campaign while listening to a private FM radio station. All of us should come forward to contribute for such a cause,” said Priti Pokharel, a college student.
Following the Haiti quake, experts here have outlined the need to inform citizens of Himalayan nation about the possible impact of such a disaster as Nepal lies in one of the most vulnerable earthquake zones.
A quake measuring 8.4 on Richter scale had struck eastern Nepal in 1934 killing over 8500 persons and smaller one in 1988 had killed 721. Many feel that the next big quake is likely to strike western Nepal.
“The present focus is on raising funds for Haiti’s children, but we also want to protect Nepal’s children from any potential quake in future by raising awareness through this campaign,” said Rakesh Upadhyay, MD of Kidzee Kathmandu.