Nepal response team to work in emergency camp
The Salvation Army received official permission from the chief district officer to work in Durbar Square Camp in Bhaktapur, next to an ancient city listed as a World Heritage Centre by UNESCO that used to have beautiful palace courtyards and artwork and now houses 1,200 people.
The request came from the leader of the camp coordination and camp management cluster, who recognized the Army for its work in Haiti and management of a large camp in Port-au-Prince.
The team provided food and water packets to 70 families who had lived in a camp since the earthquake but were leaving and going back home if their houses were not too badly damaged or to friends and relatives. The packets were intentionally kept fairly small with rice, dhal, oil, salt, noodles and water in order for them to be portable.
The international emergency services response team has also led assessment visits, often walking, to hard to reach villages.
An assessment team returned from a three-day walking trip to Sindhupalchok, where it visited eight villages, none of which were accessible by road. They had found 90 percent of the houses in the area damaged, and because the potato harvest is still a couple of months away the most urgent needs are for food and shelter. A distribution by helicopter is now planned there May 8 to give 225 families from four villages food, tarpaulins and ropes.
Support for The Salvation Army’s response continues to pour in from around the world, including from longstanding supporters of the Army such as FedEx. With a 14-year history of assisting the Army during disasters, the international delivery and distribution company donated US$50,000 to the Army’s disaster response in Nepal.
“During times of disaster, it is crucial for our response teams to provide relief as quickly as possible, and supporters like FedEx ensure that we have the means to do so,” said Lt. Colonel William Mockabee, executive director of the Salvation Army World Service Office (SAWSO). “Monetary support of this kind not only goes toward providing relief immediately following a disaster, but allows us to serve long after to make sure that communities are rebuilt. Our efforts in Nepal will likely span the coming months and even years.”
Last week, the Worldwide Prayer Meeting focused on the reopening of the Sisters cafe and beauty salon that The Salvation Army in Nepal operates to provide training and income to women who might otherwise not be able to find employment. It has since opened, and this week’s prayer meeting will again focus on the disaster response in Nepal.
One piece of particularly good news from Nepal is that The Salvation Army’s cafe/beauty salon, ‘Sisters’, has been able to reopen. The cafe and beauty salon provides training and income to women who might otherwise not be able to find employment. The reopening of the venture is seen as a great answer to prayer, after Salvationists and friends from around the world prayed for the project during last week’s Worldwide Prayer Meeting.
Visit salvationarmy.org/nepalearthquake to make a donation in support of The Salvation Army’s #NepalEarthquake appeal.