Dear friends and reader,
Thank you for your concern and good wishes since the devastating earthquake that took place in Nepal on 25th April 2015. We received an overwhelming number of emails, phone calls and messages and are deeply touched by your concern and eagerness to help. It gave us strength and comfort during this difficult time. Almost two years have passed, and Nepal is still healing from these deep traumas. And we are still here to help in that process.
Measuring 7.8 in the Richter scale, the earthquake left a profound trail of destruction in the villages surrounding Kathmandu, in Kavre District (the location of Dwarika’s Resort Dhulikhel) and Sindhupalchowk, along with many other areas of central and western Nepal. More than 8,000 lives have been lost, countless homes and villages destroyed.
After addressing the needs of our guests, staff and other tourists, we began distributing food, tents and other essential supplies to affected areas where relief had not yet reached. We had groups of staff going out to survey the needs of remote communities and immediately helping these areas. Other staff members were busy procuring and packing relief materials to send out. Once the immediate crisis was managed, our work focused on helping people to reconstruct their homes and villages, and for this, we urge your support.
A second earthquake hit the country on 12th May 2015, and an Internally Displaced Person Camp was lifted in Kathmandu, with temporary settlements for the people from Sindhupalchowk, the earthquake’s epicenter region that consequently lost almost 90% of its homes.
Since their land and homes are inhabitable, the IDP Camp was home to many villagers including the elderly, children, and pregnant women – a total of 350 people. The camp grew and developed into “Hope Camp”. The children were enrolled in a nearby school and have been outfitted with school bags, books and supplies, and the seniors received training lessons on different labour components.
Nowadays, the villagers returned to Sindhupalchowk to work on the construction on their new houses under the “Our Dream Village” project. Most of the children remain in the capital; so they are able continue to attend school and their studies. From the IDP Hope Camp, these children moved to the nearby Hope Camp Hostel, a which provides rooms for them to sleep, a study room and an eating area, as well as guidance from 5 parents who look after them 24 hours a day. The project guarantees their lodging, surveillance and daily care, schooling, medical care, meals, football practices (guided by the volunteer football player Om B. Raut), after school tutoring and extra activities.
In the presence of situations meant to be temporary, we are currently in the process of assessing the villager’s land, homes and farms, in order to construct new homes. With this will, “Our Dream Village” project was born, and with it, the intention of building 230 houses to re-home all those still deeply affected by the earthquake.
Dwarika’s Foundation has joined forces with Shanti Leprahilfe Dortmund, as brothers in arms in pursuing these mutual goals since day one. Others have joined, such as Associação Obrigado Portugal, Namlo Europa and EcoHimal Nepal.
It is vitally important that the Nepalese people affected by this natural disaster are able rebuild their lives quickly, sustainably and with dignity. With this in mind and heart, we would like to invite you to be a part of our visions, projects and ideals.
The purpose of this blog is to update anyone interested on our daily and weekly efforts. For more information, we may send a more detailed newsletter to those who might express a deeper interest in the projects.
Thank you for keeping Nepal in your thoughts and prayers, as we work on addressing and rising from this disaster with strength, courage and persistence.
With deep gratitude,
Ambica Shrestha, Sangita Shrestha Einhaus, Rene Vijay Shrestha Einhaus and the entire Dwarika’s and Kathmandu Travels & Tours family