On 25 April 2015, a massive 7.6 magnitude earthquake struck Nepal that left nearly 9,000 people dead and destroyed or damaged more than 850,000 homes. Further devastation caused by followed hundreds aftershocks.
Women, children, the elderly, people living with disabilities and those belonging to “lower castes” have all been disproportionately affected. Besides, the earthquake impacted employment severely. The problem of landlessness, widespread before the quake, had also worsened.
Our immediate response
Oxfam immediately responded by providing lifesaving relief including emergency food items, drinking water and by setting up temporary shelters and emergency latrines. Our priorities were to ensure that affected people had access to adequate humanitarian assistance and to prevent the outbreak of waterborne diseases.
We distributed staple food supplies, alongside rice seeds and agricultural tools for farmers. In Kathmandu Valley, we provided clean water and sanitation facilities to earthquake survivors living in some of the worst-hit districts. Our technical experts constructed water tanks and sanitation facilities in the temporary camps.
Outside of Kathmandu Valley, we managed to ship vital emergency supplies to Gorkha, near the epicenter of the quake, as well as providing tarpaulins, rice, seeds, water and sanitation equipment to other hard-hit rural districts with very limited road access.
We’ve been working in seven of the 14 most affected districts: Gorkha, Nuwakot, Dhading, Sindhupalchowk, Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur.
Total people supported in three years (April 2015-March 2018)
|400,000 people got access to clean water, sanitation, food, and shelter|
|58,000 hygiene kits distributed|
|15,000 families restarted their lost businesses|
|17,000 farmers received rice seeds|
Total people reached from April 2017-March 2018
Six Months On
It’s been six months since the first of two huge earthquakes devastated Nepal.
The disaster destroyed over 600,000 homes and left millions of Nepalese people in need of urgent humanitarian aid.
In the last six months, Oxfam emergency teams and the people of Nepal have been working hard to rebuild. Here’s what we’ve achieved together so far:
More than 35,000 people have accessed clean water, including 48 community water systems being repaired or installed.
Here, Sushila and Deepak collect clean water from an Oxfam tank. The tank supplies ten households in the village of Burunchili, where only 25 of its 200 houses were left standing. Oxfam supplied the village with clean water, toilets and hygiene kits.
Oxfam distributed 54,100 shelter kits and provided training to local builders and women in how to build more secure shelters.
Sangita learns to build a safe, temporary shelter in Sindhupalchok district. Sangita and her team have built 26 corrugated iron shelters so far. “On one hand I can do something productive for earthquake affected community people in my area. On the other, it’s a unique skill I have gathered as I can construct a house whenever there’s a need,” said Sangita.
Sanitation and Hygiene
Oxfam installed 7,911 toilets, distributed 49,200 hygiene kits and hosted 700 hygiene promotion events.
Deepak is happy to have access to a proper toilet, installed by Oxfam in the village of Burunchili. Having a clean toilet, soap and clean water for hand-washing, are crucial to prevent disease, particularly when many people live together after a disaster.
33,600 farmers received seeds to replant lost crops and lost or destroyed agricultural tools were replaced .
Radhika works her small field with tools from Oxfam. Radhika, her husband and their five-year-old son lost their house and cattle shed and toilet and now live in a temporary shelter with their in-laws. Oxfam has provided her with farming tools and a hygiene kit.
Additionally, 918 households also received cash to help clear debris — helping the recovery effort whilst giving people the chance to earn an income again. Cash-for-work initiatives offer the people affected an opportunity to earn an income as well as gain some dignity knowing they are helping to reconstruct their community.
Dil Maya Sunar (pictured second from right) helped clear the debris from a collapsed school block. “We generally work on the farm but this time, the earthquake swept away our land where we would grow corn, and I’ve nothing else to do,” said Dil Maya. She worked for 15 days under Oxfam’s Cash for Work Programme.