In the wake of the events of April 25th, Energy, Environment Research & Development Centre EERDC has been coordinating with alumni of Kathmandu University in raising and supplying relief materials such as tents, food, and medical supplies to various affected areas. Through site visits and a needs assessment, Shenpen has been able to act as a significant channel for collection, transportation and distribution of relief materials to the affected areas.
We reached about 900 people and distributed medical supplies in five remote Village Development Committees of Sindhupalchowk: Sipapokhari , Nawalpur, Bisedeutar, Bhimtar, Thokarpa( Chihan Dada).
Shenpen has supplied over NPR 45,000 towards the purchase and distribution of soap, hygiene items like cotton and sanitary pads, Niko and piyus, medical supplies such as Met 400 and Protozil. These medicines are used for first aid and it can be distributed without the prescription of a medical practitioner. Piyus is used for water purification and important so that earthquake victims will be able to get safe drinking water. Having access to even basic sanitation items such as toothbrushes not only allows people to maintain their oral health, but it also provides the dignity of normal everyday life.
Sulov Shrestha from EERDC says: Due to supply limitations such as a lack of funds or shortage of goods available in the market, relief supplies are often falling short of total demand. In some cases this shortage has led to many people having to do without the supplies, or hassled to minor quarrels among locals. Logistically distribution poses a great challenge because of remote locations of those who are in need, and damage to main roads that service affected areas.
Shenpen has had success servicing and delivering supplies to the above list of areas by coordinating with local representatives calmly and peacefully.
While disaster relief is not something new to Nepal, effective methods of overcoming supply and distribution challenges are continuing to evolve. Without proper consultation through site visits soon after the earthquake, issues become exacerbated due to limited health and food supplies. Working collaboratively and having a plan before these issues arise are both necessary actions so that disaster impacts are lessened.
Mr. Om Prakash Dhungel, like many others had a traumatic experience caused by the earthquake. His 12-member family found themselves without their home as it was completely destroyed by the massive initial quake and subsequent tremors. When EERDC learned of his and similar ordeals of people in his area, their team acted quickly to provide whatever supplies they could accumulate in addition to those the community was able to gather and share among themselves. We were overwhelmed by their response and hope that our further endeavors provide similar relief and satisfaction amongst the affected.