14 July 2015

Travel

Rebuilding Nepal Brick by Brick

Rebuilding Nepal Brick by Brick: 6/24/15: I’m in Nepal for the next few weeks covering the earthquake relief efforts. What I’m seeing here is breaking my heart, this country is such a part of me being as it was my home for so many years. These people don’t deserve this. No one does. And now it’s pouring monsoon rains.

Today I visited the Nutritional Rehabilitation Home run by the Nepal Youth Foundation. This woman suffered extensive injuries after being buried in the rubble of her home that collapsed on her during the earthquake. She weeps thinking of her lost her house and seven year old granddaughter that was killed. In the background, eighteen-year-old Ramesh who lost both legs in the quake wheels himself out of the room.

6/25/15
In the mountainous Kavre District of Nepal the people wonder how they’ll ever afford to rebuild their homes that were devastated by the earthquake. One in four of Nepal’s 28 million people lives on a daily income of less that $1.25 a day. Many have built small tin shelters from their old roofs to protect themselves from the pounding rains. The local government is offering 150,000 rupees or about $150 per person to rebuild. With such a distressed government it’s reassuring to hear the Nepali government received $4.4 billion in aid at the large donor conference in Kathmandu yesterday.

It’s not just the personal philanthropic efforts that are needed in a disaster such as this but actual government money for larger rebuild efforts. Still, these people that live so remotely need to know that people care and it is grassroots organizations that are bringing them immediate supplies. Many of these local organizations TEWA, Loom, Saathi, Beyond Beijing Committee, Women for Human Rights, WACN are supported by the amazing efforts of the Global Fund for Women. (www.globalfundforwomen.org).

6/26/15
The beautiful villages of Bungamati and Khokana, old Newari towns basically no longer exist. I have fond memories of this picturesque area, especially during harvest season when the villagers winnowed the rice in the streets. Now it looks like a war zone. Children mimicked their parents clearing the rubble and a man showed me a rat he’s just speared. I told him Nepal has nothing on our New York rats. It’s a race to build temporary shelters against the impending monsoon. It absolutely down poured rain all day.

6/30/15
Sleeping in a tent in torrential downpours in the Dolka region, in an area near the epicenter and basically destroyed by the second earthquake. The locals live in makeshift shelters cobbled together from their old tin rooftops and whatever they can find. It’s mountainous here on the road to Jiri, and cold wet and rainy. Global Fund for Women helped supply grants to grassroots organizations such as TEWA and Loom who are distributing much needed mosquito nets and dignity kits for women.

I’m honored to be documenting the work and spending the evening with incredible women who are really making a difference with their earthquake relief efforts and their tireless inspiration to better women’s rights here in Nepal. Bandana Rana executive chair of Saathi, photographer Alison Wright, Lily Thapa founder of Women for Human Rights (WHR), Sajanai Amataya Paneru general secretary of Saathi, Prativa Subedi of Women Awareness Centre Nepal (WACN), Shanta Shrestha from Beyond Beijing Committee (BBC), Durga Sob from Feminist Dalit Organization (FDO). All are grantees benefiting from the influential organization Global Fund for Women.

7/2/15
Heartbreak City. Just a few down and dirty photos of the destruction in Dolkha, a town on the way to Jiri that was just a few miles from the epicenter and hard hit by the second earthquake on May 12. It’s pissing down chilly rain in this mountainous area and most people are still living under tarps. At least my tent proved to be waterproof. This young girl emerging from her makeshift muddy tarp home in her clean school uniform and braided hair tied in neat blue ribbons just encapsulated the situation in Nepal to me. No matter what hardship is thrown at them the people of Nepal will always have their dignity and their pride.

Followed Loom, a small NGO, distributing women dignity kits for new mothers and much needed mosquito nets. Loom is a small NGO but it’s encouraging to see the passion in the younger generation of Nepal students so fired up about women’s rights issues. They were here just after the first quake and Bishnu showed me some of the photos of buildings he’d taken on his phone. Since the second quake these buildings and most of the town no longer exists.

7/14/15
Exciting day in Gorkha for the Nepal Youth Foundation (www.Nepalyouthfoundation.org) where we’ve delivered 30 large tents to help shelter 120 displaced families. Thank you to those who helped raise thousands of dollars through my Faces of Hope non-profit (www.facesofhope.org) as each tent costs $500 and the money has gone to help support these tents, mattresses, blankets and solar lights for the displaced families and orphans in the NYF run transit camp.
We’ve experienced the monsoon mudslides first hand and now hundreds of families are displaced as their damaged homes are sliding down the mountains.

The Nepal Youth Foundation opens the first new school in Ghorka to replace the school that was destroyed in the earthquake. I’m amazed by the resilience and tenacity of the orphaned and displaced children I’ve been staying with at the transit camp. Every night they sing and dance and they’re so excited to be returning to school!

ANJALI – A LONE SURVIVOR
Thirteen-year-old Anjali Darai, lost her entire family: father, mother and younger brother, all at once on the April 25, 2015. They were on the site of the landslide collecting fodder for their animals. Her family is still buried under the mud because nobody can dig the bodies out. I accompanied NYF President Som Paneru, with Sanjoj Maharjan o visit her in her village Salyantar, Dhading District, last week. We visited her ultra poor and elderly grandparents who are now taking care of Anjali. The team has assured her and the grandparents that NYF will take care of her education, living cost, health care and emotional well-being, at least until she graduates high School. Anjali is one of the thousands of children who are severely affected by the recent deadly earthquake. NYF plans to support at least 1,000 children like Anjali under its “Kinship Care” Program, a model best suited for community based rehabilitation of children. If you wish to sponsor a child or make one time contribution, it costs only US$350 per child a year. Please visit http://www.nepalyouthfoundation.org to see how you to can help sponsor these children and their education. We did.

Nepal, Kathmandu, earthquake relief efforts. Nutritional Rehabilitation Home supported by Nepal Youth Foundation. This clinic usually assists with nutrition & new mothers but took in many survivors who were injured in the earthquake. Man Kumari, cries as she thinks of losing her 7 year old grandaughter in the earthquake, 18 yr old Ramesh Kham in the background in a wheelchair who lost both his legs in the quake.
Nepal, Kathmandu, earthquake relief efforts. Nutritional Rehabilitation Home supported by Nepal Youth Foundation. This clinic usually assists with nutrition & new mothers but took in many survivors who were injured in the earthquake. Man Kumari, cries as she thinks of losing her 7 year old grandaughter in the earthquake, 18 yr old Ramesh Kham in the background in a wheelchair who lost both his legs in the quake.
Nepal, Kathmandu, earthquake relief efforts. Nutritional Rehabilitation Home supported by Nepal Youth Foundation. This clinic usually assists with nutrition & new mothers but took in many survivors who were injured in the earthquake. Healing Hands applying healing techniques to those who were injured. Shanti Bajouacharyu, working with 18 yr old Ramesh Kham who lost both his legs in the quake.
Nepal, Kathmandu, earthquake relief efforts. Nutritional Rehabilitation Home supported by Nepal Youth Foundation. This clinic usually assists with nutrition & new mothers but took in many survivors who were injured in the earthquake. Healing Hands applying healing techniques to those who were injured. Shanti Bajouacharyu, working with 18 yr old Ramesh Kham who lost both his legs in the quake.
Nepal, Kavre District, Nala, earthquake relief efforts. TEWA project supported by Global Fund for Women. Sabita Shrestha (in yellow), an executive director with TEWA, her husband encouraged her to join. Their home was badly damaged and they lost some animals. They'll know be getting some financial support through TEWA.
Nepal, Kavre District, Nala, earthquake relief efforts. TEWA project supported by Global Fund for Women. Sabita Shrestha (in yellow), an executive director with TEWA, her husband encouraged her to join. Their home was badly damaged and they lost some animals. They’ll know be getting some financial support through TEWA.
Nepal, Kavre District, Nala, earthquake relief efforts. Visiting destroyed homes on TEWA project supported by Global Fund for Women. Laxmi Dahal (21) and her mother in law, Nirmala, in front of their destroyed home. TEWA is now helping to financially support them.
Nepal, Kavre District, Nala, earthquake relief efforts. Visiting destroyed homes on TEWA project supported by Global Fund for Women. Laxmi Dahal (21) and her mother in law, Nirmala, in front of their destroyed home. TEWA is now helping to financially support them.
Nepal, Kavre District, Nala, earthquake relief efforts. Visiting destroyed homes on TEWA project supported by Global Fund for Women. Laxmi Dahal (21) and her mother in law, Nirmala, in front of their destroyed home. TEWA is now helping to financially support them.
Nepal, Kavre District, Nala, earthquake relief efforts. Visiting destroyed homes on TEWA project supported by Global Fund for Women. Laxmi Dahal (21) and her mother in law, Nirmala, in front of their destroyed home. TEWA is now helping to financially support them.
Nepal, Bungamati village that was basically destroyed by earthquake damage. Man rescuing items form his house.
Nepal, Bungamati village that was basically destroyed by earthquake damage. Man rescuing items form his house.
Nepal, Dholakha, Charikot earthquake relief work. The NGO Loom, unpacking supplies in the hard hit Dolakha region near the second epicenter. They have a $5000 TEWA funded grant (through Global Fund for Women) and are using it to hand out mosquito nets, buckets and dignity kits for women with newborn children. These kits include tootpaste, lentils, rice, baby massage oil, baby clothes, baby food, sanitary pads, a shawl. Surveying the extent of the earthquake damage in town.
Nepal, Dholakha, Charikot earthquake relief work. The NGO Loom, unpacking supplies in the hard hit Dolakha region near the second epicenter. They have a $5000 TEWA funded grant (through Global Fund for Women) and are using it to hand out mosquito nets, buckets and dignity kits for women with newborn children. These kits include tootpaste, lentils, rice, baby massage oil, baby clothes, baby food, sanitary pads, a shawl. Surveying the extent of the earthquake damage in town.
Nepal, Dholakha, Charikot earthquake relief work. The NGO Loom, unpacking supplies in the hard hit Dolakha region near the second epicenter. They have a $5000 TEWA funded grant (through Global Fund for Women) and are using it to hand out mosquito nets, buckets and dignity kits for women with newborn children. These kits include tootpaste, lentils, rice, baby massage oil, baby clothes, baby food, sanitary pads, a shawl. Surveying the extent of the earthquake damage in town. Displaced girl emerges from her tarp/tent ready for school.
Nepal, Dholakha, Charikot earthquake relief work. The NGO Loom, unpacking supplies in the hard hit Dolakha region near the second epicenter. They have a $5000 TEWA funded grant (through Global Fund for Women) and are using it to hand out mosquito nets, buckets and dignity kits for women with newborn children. These kits include tootpaste, lentils, rice, baby massage oil, baby clothes, baby food, sanitary pads, a shawl. Surveying the extent of the earthquake damage in town. Displaced girl emerges from her tarp/tent ready for school.
Nepal, Kathmandu Valley, Dharmasthali, Pusal.  Earthquake relief efforts. TEWA working in community with financial support towards earthquake relief efforts supported by Global Fund for Women grant. With this grant TEWA trains "barefoot volunteers" to help local families in the field where needed for 1-3 months with cooking, working in fields, taking care of children, building houses and basic community healing. This low caste Janjati community is being supported and helped by TEWA with financial support and visits from volunteers. Surya Putwar in front of his tent is building a corrugated tunnel house to give his family batter shelter frm the monsoon rain. Supported by TEWA.
Nepal, Kathmandu Valley, Dharmasthali, Pusal. Earthquake relief efforts. TEWA working in community with financial support towards earthquake relief efforts supported by Global Fund for Women grant. With this grant TEWA trains “barefoot volunteers” to help local families in the field where needed for 1-3 months with cooking, working in fields, taking care of children, building houses and basic community healing. This low caste Janjati community is being supported and helped by TEWA with financial support and visits from volunteers. Surya Putwar in front of his tent is building a corrugated tunnel house to give his family batter shelter frm the monsoon rain. Supported by TEWA.
Nepal, Kathmandu. Saathi  nonprofit, founded by Bandana Rana, an organization pioneering for women's rights. With a GFW grant they are running a music/dance festival specifically for children affected by the earthquake. All these families are living in tented shelters in the area and with GFW grants they run weekly activities such as drawing, painitng, dances for the children.
Nepal, Kathmandu. Saathi nonprofit, founded by Bandana Rana, an organization pioneering for women’s rights. With a GFW grant they are running a music/dance festival specifically for children affected by the earthquake. All these families are living in tented shelters in the area and with GFW grants they run weekly activities such as drawing, painitng, dances for the children.
Nepal, Gorkha, Nepal Youth Foundation. Children living in camp at the Nepal Youth Foundation sponsored transit camp for children who have lost parents or relatives during the earthquake. The eat together, do homework together and are begining to attend a newly built local school.
Nepal, Gorkha, Nepal Youth Foundation. Children living in camp at the Nepal Youth Foundation sponsored transit camp for children who have lost parents or relatives during the earthquake. The eat together, do homework together and are begining to attend a newly built local school.
Nepal, Gorkha District, Ramele, Gorkha. Family cleaning up their house damaged by the earthquake.
Nepal, Gorkha District, Ramele, Gorkha. Family cleaning up their house damaged by the earthquake.
Nepal, Gorkha District, Arughat, Gorkha. Damaged buildings from the earthquake.
Nepal, Gorkha District, Arughat, Gorkha. Damaged buildings from the earthquake.
Nepal, Gorkha District, Arughat, Gorkha. Nepal Youth Foundation. Destruction after the earthquake. Children where NYF is setting up their donated tents for displaced people.
Nepal, Gorkha District, Arughat, Gorkha. Nepal Youth Foundation. Destruction after the earthquake. Children where NYF is setting up their donated tents for displaced people.
Nepal, Gorkha, Nepal Youth Foundation. Displaced children who have lost parents or relatives during the earthquake living in the Nepal Youth Foundation sponsored transit home camp. They eat together, do homework together and are begining to attend a newly built local school.
Nepal, Gorkha, Nepal Youth Foundation. Displaced children who have lost parents or relatives during the earthquake living in the Nepal Youth Foundation sponsored transit home camp. They eat together, do homework together and are begining to attend a newly built local school.

Nepal, Gorkha, Nepal Youth Foundation. Displaced children who have lost parents or relatives during the earthquake living in the Nepal Youth Foundation sponsored transit home camp. They eat together, do homework together and are begining to attend a newly built local school. Orphaned girl who lost her parents.
Nepal, Gorkha, Nepal Youth Foundation. Displaced children who have lost parents or relatives during the earthquake living in the Nepal Youth Foundation sponsored transit home camp. They eat together, do homework together and are begining to attend a newly built local school. This orphaned girl who lost her parents was recently placed with relatives. There is hope.
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2 comments

  1. Mare Stanton

    Sign me up! You are an incredible being Alison Wright!

  2. Mary Neumann

    Alison, you are an angel in the flesh. Thank you for your work. It was an honor to meet you at Garrison Fall 2015. Please, sign me up.

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