Caritas responds to earthquake in Nepal

27 April 2015

Caritas reaches more than 100,000 with relief supplies in Nepal

It is one month on from the initial 7.8 earthquake that devastated so many areas in Nepal, and Caritas has now supported just over 137,000 people around the country with shelter, food, healthcare, and water purification and hygiene kits.

Rain has already begun to fall and will intensify as the monsoon season begins, bringing landslides and disease to many already desperate communities. Responding to the ongoing need, the Caritas network continues to deliver relief supplies to thousands of families, while also laying the foundation for a long-term recovery.

"Caritas is committed to supporting 177,750 people with critical shelter, water and hygiene kits in seven of the most affected districts by the end of June. We will continue to work with our local partner on the ground, Caritas Nepal, to help communities rebuild their lives and livelihoods," says Mark Mitchell, Humanitarian Programmes Coordinator for Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand.

Despite the many people that have already been reached, some areas are very difficult to access and Caritas teams are using tractors or travelling on foot to reach some of the more isolated villages, such as Thokarpa.

Located in Sindhupalchowk District, one of the worst-hit areas lying to the east of Kathmandu, Caritas has provided relief supplies to people in Thokarpa and is supporting a Health Post treating the injured and ill.

Staffed by two dedicated young workers, the post has been able to treat more than 400 people in the past month, despite severe shortages in basic medicines after the earthquakes.

“During the day, we forget our sorrows by treating people. But by the night, we too miss our homes and dear ones. That makes us sad, but we are not the only victims here,” assistant health worker Ganga Pathak (24) said.

Ms Pathak operates the Outpatient Department services, while her co-worker Rewati Thapa (20) handles delivery cases.

As the death toll climbs past 8,900 and the number of houses completely destroyed approaches 500,000, the resilience of health workers and aid workers around Nepal is more important than ever.

"We are shaken but not beaten; we shall rise as one stronger Nepal. It may take a little longer but rise we shall," says Fr Pius Perumana, Director of Caritas Nepal.

Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand is appealing for donations to provide humanitarian relief to those affected by this major emergency in Nepal.

 

Donations to assist with the humanitarian response can be made by:

Donating online using a credit card at www.caritas.org.nz
Internet banking - account #03 0518 0211216 00
Phoning 0800 22 10 22 to make credit card donations