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Aug 11, 2016

Families Begin to Rebuild

Elderly woman works to build her new home
Elderly woman works to build her new home

Thank you for your generous support of families in Nepal affected by the devastating earthquake last year.  Your donations have helped familes and communities begin the road to recovery.  After completing a baseline survey and program orientation, we were able to identify 60 families (20 in Sarki Gaun, 20 in Sunkhani, and 20 in Sindhupalchowk) for housing construction support. The baseline survey revealed that families living in these communities were the most vulnerable, as over 50% of the homes were destroyed. Multiple aftershocks, fuel shortages, and Nepal’s harsh weather have made it extremely difficult for families in these areas rebuild after the earthquake. The one-on-one interviews conducted by local staff helped identify and respond to some of the situational factors that could potentially increase vulnerabilities at both local and community levels. To date, 40 houses have been constructed and 20 more are under construction. 

Three women’s groups in Sipapokhare, Bhotsipa, and Sunkhani have been established. Each group has 30 members. These three self-help groups meet twice a month to discuss challenges and share with each other their hopes and ambitions to save money for their families. The money is saved in a joint account and women can take a loan from the group to establish or expand their businesses. These 90 women have begun basic adult education, and will also be provided with livelihood training, such as poultry farming, goat raising, organic vegetable farming, and tailoring. 

The project is going very well, and we look forward to continuing the great work you have generously supported! 

Voices From Nepal: Ms. Sumitra Tamang

By the time the earthquake and aftershocks that struck Nepal last April had subsided, 9,000 people were dead, 22,000 were injured, and 800,000 homes lay in ruin. Sumitra, a life-long resident of Sunkhani, located in the Nuwokot District of central Nepal, was among the survivors. Recently, local staff visited with families, like Sumitra’s, who have been working tirelessly to rebuild their lives, livelihoods, homes, and community. Sumitra has lived in Sunkhani her entire life and works as a laborer whenever she can find work. Her husband left her 12 years ago. With three children and no income, life has been a day-to-day struggle ever since. When the earthquake struck, Sumitra lost everything. In just a few seconds, her house, and everything in it, lay in ruin.

“I felt hopeless. My children and I had no food or shelter,” says Sumitra, recalling the terrifying event. “We had to sleep outside under the trees, with empty stomachs. All of our clothes, food, and blankets were destroyed. I had lost all of my hope. For days we didn’t hear from anyone. I thought that the government didn’t care if we lived or died.”

Sumitra’s feelings changed when a relief camp was set up within a week or so of the earthquake. The camp would help build emergency shelters, and distribute food and clothes to the most vulnerable families. “I couldn’t stop crying because of how grateful I was,” recalls Sumitra when she found out that she would receive the support she needed to rebuild her home.  Today, Sumitra and her children live in a sturdy, safe home. Sumitra, and other women just like her, will receive training, support, and small, low-interest loans to start small businesses that will generate income.  Sumitra and other women in her community have lifted themselves out of the rubble of April 17, 2015 and rebuilt their lives thanks to the support of generous donors.

Sumitra Tang is interviewed by local staff
Sumitra Tang is interviewed by local staff
Community meeting
Community meeting
House being built
House being built
Women participate in self-help group
Women participate in self-help group
Women
Women's adult education class
Jul 22, 2016

Self Help Groups Start in KaleboLaka

Women volunteer to be part of Self Help Groups
Women volunteer to be part of Self Help Groups

Thank you for your contribution to our recent projects in Kalebo Laka, Ethiopia.  In May we were honored to receive a Community Grant of £11,109 facilitated through GlobalGiving for this project which, with your generous donations, essentially covers the expenses for the first year.  We are presently awaiting confirmation from another possible funder whether they might cover the running costs for the second year.  

Along with fundraising events, crowdfunding campaigns and sponsored expeditions, women in Kalebo Laka will soon be forming Self Help Groups that will provide mutual support, income-earning skills training and low-interest loans that will enable them to start businesses.  For women who have only ever known the role of sourcing water and other domestic duties, this will be life changing!  HOPE's staff are keen to get started!

Due to unexpected rain the start of the constrution of the water project in Kalebo Laka was delayed.  Roads were not accessible for the transportation of materials for many weeks.  Consequently this then delayed the start of the Self Help Group project in Kalebo Laka as well.

In the past few days I have had confirmation that both projects have commenced!  There is much joy, anticipation and enthusiasm from the community in Kalebo Laka that their future will now be different, where they can play a role in helping themselves out of poverty.

We will continue to keep you updated as the projects progress and as we learn about our funding status for the second year of this project.  In the meantime, thank you again for your support and for empowering these women in rural Ethiopia.

Income-generating skills are taught to daughters
Income-generating skills are taught to daughters
Women learn about selling excess crops at market
Women learn about selling excess crops at market
Jun 22, 2016

Project delay but hope is on its way!

Community involvement in improving the roads
Community involvement in improving the roads

Thank you once again for your support of HOPE's next water project in Kalebo Laka.  Unfortunately, there has been a delay to the start of this water project due to unseasonal rain in Ethiopia and much of southern and eastern Africa.  This is a result of the El Nino weather phenomenon, which has contributed to the lack of rain at the end of last year and the current abundance of rain, when it is not expected.  In the north of Ethiopia, unfortunately this has brought on drought and left millions of people in desperate need of food due to crop failure.  This is the worst drought in half a century, leaving ten million Ethiopians in that region of the country in need of food aid.

 

In south west Ethiopia, where HOPE has been working since 1986, the region has not suffered from drought but unexpected rains at present has meant that roads have been washed out and materials have not been able to be transported to Kalebo Laka for the water project to commence.  Last month, one of HOPE's 4 wheel-drive vehicles turned over trying to get through difficult roads and now has to be mended. This was due to the poor road quality and the extreme remoteness of the villages HOPE works in.  

 

Having reliable roads has now become the difference between having access to clean water and not.   Therefore, the local community in Kalebo Laka has been busy enlarging the roads, strengthening local bridges and working to clear the roads where mud build-up makes it is impossible for even 4 wheel-drive cars to travel.  This is the first task that the community has done together to allow HOPE to help bring clean water to their village.  Soon, when the rain ceases, the community will also be required to dig the trenches from the newly capped spring to the water (4.566 km) and also build two water tanks, nine water points and eight washbasins.  207 pit latrines have been planned as well which will be the responsibility of the community to dig.  

 

In a previous water project, the commitment of the community to start the water project was so great that they walked to the furthest point that vehicles could bring the materials and then physically carried the necessary equipment back to the village on foot.  Whilst this was time consuming and exhausting, it showed HOPE how passionate they were to have an operating water system and they would not let the poor quality of roads stop work from beginning in their community.  They were aware how clean water would transform their lives and they wanted nothing to hinder the project from starting.

 

HOPE has found that this level of community involvement leads to greater ownership of the water system.  The locally appointed Water Caretakers and Water Committee also play a significant part in the sustainability of the water system, maintaining and looking after its upkeep and making decisions about water fees, timings for water point usage, etc.  All combined this is helping the community to help itself and access to clean water is the initial catalyst.

 

Weather predictions show that the rain should soon be letting up and the community can start to clear the site where work will take place.  Therefore, it is looking positive that the water system will be up and running by September 2016.  

 

Thank you for the part you have played in bringing positive change to that community and helping them to helping themselves.

An example of the roads in rural Ethiopia
An example of the roads in rural Ethiopia
Remembering a child that died due to dirty water
Remembering a child that died due to dirty water
 
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