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Concern Worldwide's #NepalEarthquake response explained

Caoimhe Gaskin | 06 May 2015 | 0 Comments

Co-ordinating an emergency response is a difficult and challenging task. Concern is working with local partner organisations, Rural Reconstruction Nepal and Nepal Water for Health, to assess the situation in Nepal and to distribute aid as quickly as possible to those who need it most. Here are answers to some common questions that have arisen as a result of the 7.8 magnitude Nepal earthquake.

Where are you working and how is this decided?

Concern is focussed on reaching vulnerable and isolated communities that need assistance in the wake of this terrible disaster.

Remote and rural homes in Nepal tend to be made with stones and mud, leaving them completely unprotected against an earthquake of such magnitude. This has led to the complete destruction of homes and livelihoods across many remote districts.

Shuvada Sapkota stands in the ruins of her home in Kabhrepalanchok district. Photo taken by Crystal Wells/Concern Worldwide.

Reaching these communities is challenging, as many of the worst affected areas affected have either been cut off or are extremely difficult to access due to landslides and severely damaged infrastructure. 

Tulasa Aryal sits on the porch of her earthquake-ravaged home in Bakrang, a village near the epicenter of the earthquake. Photo taken by Crystal Wells/Concern Worldwide.

In order to reach the communities that most need help, we have partnered with local organisations and are coordinating our efforts with other international NGOs, the UN, and the district disaster relief committees set up by the Government of Nepal.

We are currently focussed on distributing aid to 14,000 families in three of the ten worst affected districts: Sindhulpalchowk, Dolakha and Sindhuli. 

Why is it taking so long for aid to reach the people of Nepal?

We have started moving supplies from India. This process is slow due to a combination of  damaged infrastructure, heavy congestion on the India-Nepal border, low road density in Nepal and the closing of Kathmandu airport to large planes. Landslides in some regions have rendered it almost impossible for aid to be brought into the country via helicopter.

Bulldozers work to re-open a bridge at Khurkot, Ramechhap. Photo taken by Helvetas.

Concern is working with two experienced local partner organizations, Rural Reconstruction Nepal and Nepal Water for Health to distribute relief items. When our relief items are in Nepal in the coming days, our partners will be essential in getting it immediately to those who need it most. 

What do you do to help the people worst affected?

Shelter, water and sanitation are our first priorities. Initially, we will be delivering emergency kits to 14,000 families including tents, jerry cans, blankets, sleeping mats, hygiene kits (soap, toilet paper, razors, hygiene pads, toothpaste etc.), plastic sheets, rope, water purification tablets and water jugs. Once this is implemented our next priority will be to help people quickly recover their livelihoods through access to cash and rebuilding any damaged water and sanitation infrastructure. 

Seventy-year-old Krishna Prasad Sapkota digs through the mud and stones of what used to be his home to see if any belongings can be recovered. Photo taken by Crystal Wells/Concern Worldwide

Why should I donate to Concern?

Concern is on the ground in Nepal and has set up networks with local partner organisations which will ensure that emergency aid reaches the most vulnerable people as quickly as possible. As an organisation we are extremely experienced in this area. We were early responders in a number of earthquakes in the region and globally, including the 2005 Pakistan earthquake and the 2010 Haiti earthquake. As with every response, our priority will be to reach the people who are in the most vulnerable and isolated communities. After we distribute immediate relief, we will then work hand-in-hand with communities to help them rebuild their livelihoods.

Nura Naryan Shristha works to recover building materials from his home in Bakrang, near the epicenter of the earthquake. Photo taken by Crystal Wells/Concern Worldwide.

Thank you

Your generosity has made it possible for us to move quickly to deliver and purchase relief supplies. It will also allow us to continue to help families prepare for the rainy season and eventually rebuild their homes and livelihoods. So far, Concern has raised more than €450,000 from the Irish public.

Help us now

We need your support to respond to this urgent humanitarian crisis.


Villagers queue for relief items in the Sindhupalchok District. Photo taken by Andrea Barrueto.


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