Our work in Nepal

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Our work in Nepal

A 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit near Kathmandu the capital of Nepal on 25 April 2015. The country suffered a series of aftershocks, including a major 7.3 magnitude tremor near Mount Everest on 12 May. Concern Worldwide immediately sent an emergency team to respond to the humanitarian crisis.

A distribution of emergency shelter and relief supplies at the village of Bhirkot in Dolakha district. Many houses in the area were damaged in the April 25th earthquake, butvdestroyed in the tremor of May 12th. Photo taken by Kieran McConville/Concern Wor

Humanitarian crisis

It is estimated that more than 8,600 people were killed and over 19,000 injured in the 2015 Nepal earthquake, with 500,000 houses destroyed and a further 269,000 damaged. Concern’s emergency response team worked with local partners to assist with temporary shelter, water and sanitation programmes.

Emergency response

With funding support from DEC, Concern worked with local partner organisation, Rural Reconstruction Nepal, to supply 6,439 households with temporary shelter kits, including innovative solar lights. In conjunction with local NGO, Nepal Water for Health, 4,000 households were supplied with relief kits. Together, we relaid damaged pipes to re-establish water supplies and installed temporary latrines and bathing facilities in the Sindhuli district. 

It was important to monitor the effectiveness of our response so, along with our partners, we carried out post-distribution monitoring (PDM). Of the 571 people interviewed, many from marginalised groups, 99% were satisfied with the shelter supplies they received as part of these emergency operations. The PDM enabled the most vulnerable people to tell us what they thought about our emergency activities in their own words and will continue to guide our activities for supporting those affected by earthquakes.

Second phase response

The second phase of our emergency response has focussed on activities aimed at rebuilding and reducing the risk of future disaster in four of the most severely earthquake-affected districts: Dolakha, Dhading, Sindhuli and Gorkha. Our programmes aimed at developing resilience included activities around environmental impact and gender.

Rebuilding vital infrastructure

The earthquake destroyed infrastructure; in some cases reducing schools and other essential services to rubble. Restoring education is particularly important as it provides stability in the wake of such a traumatic disaster for the youngest and most vulnerable. We’re currently supporting 58 schools to obtain over 300 semi-permanent classrooms.

As part of our water, sanitation and hygiene activities we’ve supported the implementation of two community water schemes and 42 school water projects.

Building resilience

When we spoke to communities affected by the earthquake, several issues were consistently raised: the need for opportunities in cash for work; training in masonry, plumbing and carpentry skills to boost household incomes and the construction and rehabilitation of earthquake resilient structures assessment.

In response, Concern developed its Building Resilience in Earthquake Affected Communities in Nepal (BREAC) programme. The aim of BREAC is to address the needs of the most vulnerable households in earthquake-affected communities over two years.

As the programme comes to an end, we are proud to have reached 12,600 children and their families in Dhading, Dolakha, Gorkha and Sindhuli with safer, stronger infrastructure.  We have helped build seismic-resilient homes and have helped to secure productive livelihoods through income generation, food security, and community-led Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) and preparedness support. This will ensure that the communities we’ve worked with are better able to resist and recover from natural disasters.

Flood response

In August 2017, Nepal was hit by the worst rains in 15 years. It caused severe flooding in the Terai district which had huge impacts on livelihoods, food security and nutrition. Thanks to support from Start Fund and Irish Aid, we activated an emergency response and reached 77,000 people in the affected areas. We also reached over 5,000 people with blankets and other winter essentials during the cold wave in January 2018.

Latest updates

Voices from Nepal

Homeless but thankful to be alive – The Sapkota Family

Swetchnya Tamraker – Earthquake survivor

Concern's work in Nepal

Prior to the 2015 emergency, Concern Worldwide had worked in Nepal from 2006 to 2010. Our previous programmes in Nepal focused on livelihoods, water and sanitation and nutrition. By September 2018, we aim to conclude operations in Nepal and hand over our programmes to local partners and communities to continue the work we started.