Youth outfits step into govt vaccum to help quake victims
Barely 47 km east of Kathmandu in Kavre district, Dhotra is one of the hundreds of villages in Nepal devastated by last month’s quake. But government help is yet to reach here.world Updated: May 18, 2015 23:52 IST
Barely 47 km east of Kathmandu in Kavre district, Dhotra is one of the hundreds of villages in Nepal devastated by last month’s quake. But government help is yet to reach here.
“It was only when some youths from Kathmandu reached our village with tents and food on the fourth day after the quake we found some succor,” said Narayan Kumar Dhanuwar.
Like others in his village, the 26-year-old farmer lost his house and he along with his mother and two sisters are now living in tents and surviving on rice, pulses and salt provided by the youths.
Last month’s quake exposed Nepal government’s inability to mount quick rescue and relief work despite warnings a major temblor could occur anytime. But ordinary Nepalis have come forward to help provide relief to the nearly 8 million affected by the quake.
“We started working from the third day after the quake and were the first to intervene in Dhotra,” said Avishek Shrestha, 29, of Earthquake Action Nepal (EAN), a group of 10 youth organisations that has set up solar panels and distributed over 40,000 bottles of water purifying solutions.
“We have 80 volunteers comprising professionals and students,” said Sachin Timalsena, 23, of Human Values for Peace and Prosperity, another group involved in relief work.
Besides organisations, individuals like Kalyani Karki, a final year law student who decided to give her studies a break, are also helping. Karki collected over Rs 7,00,000 and bought relief material that was distributed by relief groups.
“I am working as a link between those sending funds from abroad and those who are going to the affected areas,” she said. Till date she has supplied over 500 tents, 700 blankets and food materials.
Last month’s quake and its aftershocks claimed over 8,600 lives and injured over 20,000.