By McCall Mash
Bara, Nepal (April 3, 2019) — After a powerful windstorm hit southern Nepal on Mar. 31, at least 27 were confirmed dead, hundreds injured and thousands more left without food, water and shelter.
In immediate response to the storm, Chaudhary Foundation sent its disaster response team (DRT) to the Bara district, which is one of the worst-hit places alongside Parsa.
Though springtime thunderstorms in these regions are normal, they are rarely so destructive — houses were leveled, vehicles overturned, trees uprooted and powerlines brought down — people are ill-equipped to handle them when they do happen.
“We provided immediate aid to Bara because it was one of the worst hit areas in terms of human casualties and households affected,” said Ashesh Baral, the foundation’s executive and one of the DRT members.
The foundation — in partnership with CG Foods and Lions Club International — distributed supplies to 100 families in the Chainpur ward on Apr. 2, where at least 190 households were affected. Another 400 families in Feta, a rural municipality, will receive supply bags today.
“The aid contained the most immediate relief items like dry food that can be eaten both raw and cooked and supplies to build temporary shelters,” Baral said. “These were all things people desperately needed because they were left without houses, electricity and the ability to cook.”
Each of the 500 supply bags contained Wai Wai bhujia packets, 5 kg of rice, 2 kg of daal, potatoes, onions, 2 kg of beaten rice, 1 kg of salt, half a liter of mustard oil, mosquito nets, mattress, tarps, flashlights and matchsticks — all of the items were deemed necessary by local first responders. The foundation plans to provide more supplies as the need arises.
However, Chaudhary Foundation’s relief efforts will not end with the supply bags; it is alert and assessing the situation to give continued support.
Chaudhary Foundation first developed its DRT after the 2015 7.9-magnitude earthquake that killed an estimated 9,000 people, injured over 22,000 and left hundreds of thousands homeless.
The foundation’s ongoing relief efforts include the Model Village Project, where 70 houses will be constructed in Giranchaur, Sindhupolchowk to meet revised earthquake safety guidelines. The village will also incorporate the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and be one of the first villages to follow this model. A water tank and a digital classroom have already been provided.
The DRT was again deployed during the 2017 floods caused by abnormal monsoons in southern Nepal that killed hundreds and displaced thousands more — one of the worst storms the nation has seen.
“Chaudhary Foundation is committed to be among the first responders in providing supplies to disaster hit areas,” said Merina Ranjit, the deputy general manager of the Chaudhary Foundation.
This is just the beginning of a long journey ahead to help heal and restore broken lives, and the Chaudhary Foundation is committed to stand by, support and work with every relief worker and organization on the front line.