Can you believe it’s been over two years now since those devastating earthquakes hit Nepal in 2015?
It’s long out of the news cycle now, and with so much other important stuff going on (Aussies, make sure you’re registered with the AEC to vote in this marriage equality plebiscite!) I’m sure most of us are thinking about other things.
But I’ve been reflecting recently on what it was like to be in Nepal during the months following the quakes. What it meant to be able to provide such important and necessary relief to the women and their family members affected.
I recall being up all night on that first night, stationed at the headquarters of our local partner organisation and taking in an endless stream of people. Sleeping with hundreds of others on the floor of our partner’s textile production centre. Leaving at 3am to carry relief supplies to remote villages that had been absolutely flattened. Seeing images of the gorgeous hills of the Langtang Valley that I’d trekked so enthusiastically a couple of months before, now a muddy landslide.
So many of my memories are haunted by the recollection of thousands who lost their lives, and the sheer force of destruction and devastation.
But I have beautiful memories too.
The knowledge that, with your support, we were able to provide relief to over 65,000 people.
Yes, 65,000 people received food, water, clothing, bedding, hygiene and sanitation packs and more because of your support.
The tireless energy, compassion and selflessness of the staff at our partner organisation, the Women’s Foundation Nepal (WFN). Oh, and the time that Renu, WFN’s President and fearless leader, without giving it a second thought, literally jumped onto the back of a police truck distributing supplies, taking control from police because they were doing nothing to keep a desperate crowd in check. Renu successfully wrangled two orderly lines.
And how could I ever forget the 173 perfect babies brought safely into the world because of our Shelter for Pregnant Women and New Mothers? A program so close to my heart, being 7 weeks pregnant myself.
We were able to support 578 people through the Shelter. That’s pretty amazing when you think about it! And this wasn’t just the 173 mothers who received shelter, food, clothing, neonatal support and safe passage to hospital for their babies’ birth, their 173 gorgeous newborns received care and shelter for their first crucial months of life too, and we could support an additional 232 family members to stay with the birthing mum too.
I want to say a deep and heartfelt thank you to everyone who made a donation to our relief efforts during this tumultuous time. We were able to do what we did in large part because of you.
I want you to know we’re still working hard to give women in Nepal the tools they need to build better lives for themselves. This includes supporting 622 women through membership at one of three rural Women’s Hubs, at which they’re able to access vocational training, business development support and loans, legal support, counselling.
And we’ve got another really exciting program in the pipeline – a women’s entrepreneurship and business program that we’ll share with you really soon!
In the meantime, please consider helping us continue this kind of work by clicking here. We are grateful for every dollar and believe me, we run a tight ship. We make every dollar count.
CEO and Co-Founder