For millions of Nepali people, the twin earthquakes of April 25 and May 12, 2015 brought about darkness. Few were left unscathed as the tremors indiscriminately destroyed buildings and tore apart families. Parents were forced to bury their children, and many children were orphaned. Yet in the midst of this darkness and the unimaginable challenges, hope is shining through and incredible stories of changed lives are being told.
As Christians, we are called to follow Jesus’ leading – to bring light into dark places. In the two years since the earthquake World Renew has walked alongside communities in the district of Nuwakot, demonstrating the love of Christ and being a reminder that they have not been forgotten.
In the days immediately following the earthquake, thousands lacked the basics – food, water and shelter. World Renew provided emergency food assistance to over 10,000 people, and water filters to the community that would serve 9,457 people. World Renew also ensured that families had temporary shelters, blankets for the cold winters, and proper sanitation facilities.
Community members and the home that they helped to build.
Over the last twelve months, World Renew has focused on providing earthquake-resistant homes to the many families who have still not been able to rebuild and are living in make-shift shelters that leave them exposed to monsoons and other storms.
World Renew is working with 285 of the most vulnerable families in the district of Nuwakot, providing the supplies and training necessary to build sturdy, earthquake-resistant homes, ensuring that they are not at risk of harm in the future. This project is designed so that families in the same community work together to help each other build their homes. Communities were hesitant to adopt this approach at first, but World Renew has worked hard to foster collaboration. Today, community collaboration is strong and those who are able to build their own homes are supporting those who are unable, including the elderly, people with special needs, and female-headed households.
One of the homes currently under construction.
“On my recent visit to Nepal, communities were hard at work,” shared Kenneth Kim, World Renew’s Director of Disaster Response and Rehabilitation. “Piles of rubble were gone, replaced with piles of building materials. Materials were being moved around on trucks, and community members were busy in various stages of construction. “
Already, 81 families own new earthquake-resistant homes that they built themselves, with supplies, resources and technical assistance provided by World Renew. A further 120 houses have also begun construction.
Bir Bahadur, a 23 year-old man, is a local mason who received training from World Renew last year. World Renew staff identified him as enthusiastic and hardworking, and his skills as a mason were demonstrated quickly. After completing World Renew’s mason training Bir took initiative to work on the first set of earthquake resistant homes being constructed and was appointed as a leader in his community’s construction project. Under his leadership and supervision, the first house was constructed well and completed earlier than many others. After finishing the construction of a second home, World Renew hired Bir as a Community Construction Supervisor.
One of the trained masons working on a earthquake-resistant home.
According to Bir, “I would have gone to one of the Gulf States to earn money to fulfill the needs of my family, but World Renew has given me an opportunity to participate in mason training as well as given me the chance to work as a builder during three sets of mason training. Therefore now I can earn my living within the village itself. I am pleased to serve as a Construction Supervisor for World Renew.”
Through his dedication and hard work, Bir Bhadur is having a transformative impact on his community. This work would not have been possible without the efforts of many people, including you who offered prayers and generous support. World Renew has received over $3.4 million in funding for this Nepal response from individuals, families, churches, and organizations.
Through this support, World Renew was able to equip Bir Bhadur and many others with the skills and knowledge to make a difference. Into the darkness that the earthquake brought two years ago, World Renew is bringing the light of Christ to those in great need. This is your ministry. Thank you.
World Renew is offering an exciting opportunity for volunteers in North America to travel to Nepal to help rebuild homes for those that are unable to do so. Through these volunteer trips, you will be able to express the tangible love of Christ to those in great need.