ALEXANDRIA, VA (May 19, 2015) - The Salvation Army continues to serve communities of Nepal in the aftermath of the 7.8-magnitude earthquake that erupted approximately 85 miles east of the capital, Kathmandu, killing more than 8,000 people and destroying a half-million homes nationwide. Two weeks later the country was struck again by a 7.3-magnitude tremor near Mount Everest that killed more than 100 people and triggered fresh landslides.
The emergency response team of The Salvation Army has been meeting the immediate needs of survivors in the urban areas with operations revolving around camps for displaced people, including camp management roles and the provision of food, shelter, and water.
In rural areas, The Salvation Army is supplying food and shelter to remote communities in the districts of Ramechhap and Sindhupalchok, and around northern Gorka. In the Kathmandu Valley, The Salvation Army is working in a number of urban camps, assisting people who have lost their homes or are fearful of sleeping inside due to ongoing aftershocks.
“Not a single house is standing in the rural mountainous villages where we have visited and people are very fearful of the next earthquake,” said Betsy Baldwin, Disaster Technical Advisor for The Salvation Army World Service Office (SAWSO). "Many roads to these remote villages are blocked by landslides that may not be cleared until after the monsoon season is over in several months."
Support from the Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF) has allowed Salvation Army teams to serve villages in Sindhupalchok, which are currently accessible only by helicopter. Over the weekend of May 15, survivors in the Sindhupalchok and other remote communities were provided with solar lamps and chargers, tarps, personal hygiene items, and food. Shelter remains a major concern, especially with the monsoon season approaching. 1,000 high-quality, weatherproof tents have been ordered in Pakistan and will be transported to Nepal shortly.
“Despite challenges, the people within the affected communities have been very resourceful in building temporary houses from the building materials they have salvaged from the rubble that remains of their houses," said Baldwin.
"We give thanks to those who have offered prayers and monetary support to The Salvation Army, which allows our team the strength and resources to meet the most pressing needs of these communities in need. We ask for continued prayers for the people of Nepal.”
Monetary donations are the most critical need for survivors. The Salvation Army has set up a designated fund for relief efforts in Nepal. To give, visit salar.my/Nepal or call 1-800-SAL-ARMY (1-800-725-2769). Check donations to Salvation Army World Service Office (designate “Nepal Earthquake”) can be sent to:
International Relief Fund
P.O. Box 418558
Boston, MA 02241-8558
About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for 130 years in the United States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through the broadest array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless and opportunities for underprivileged children. 82 cents of every dollar The Salvation Army spends is used to support those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, go to www.salvationarmyusa.org.