Nepal Earthquake Relief and Recovery Fund

by GlobalGiving Vetted since 2002 Top Ranked Effective Nonprofit Project of the Month Site Visit Verified
Photo from Diyalo Foundation
Photo from Diyalo Foundation

In the three years since a pair of powerful earthquakes struck Nepal, claiming more than 9,000 lives and leaving more than 3.5 million people homeless, we've seen incredible progress toward a full recovery thanks to the tireless work of our nonprofit partners and the generous outpouring of support from donors like you.

Together, more than 44,000 GlobalGivers like you raised $5.1 million to support a diverse group of 86 vetted nonprofit partners who delivered emergency relief in the weeks and months immediately following the quakes and have led the long-term recovery efforts in their communities in the years since.

In today's final fund update, I'd like to share updates from four of our partners who've been working to ensure the future is bright, healthy, and safe for children in Nepal.

The earthquakes were especially damaging to the education system in Nepal.  More than 36,000 classrooms were damaged or destroyed leaving more than 1 million children unable to return to school, making rebuilding schools that can withstand future quakes a top priority. Diyalo Foundation worked with community members in Sewalung in rural eastern Nepal to open a new school for 62 students in 2016 and is continuing to expand its facilities by building new restrooms, installing running water, planting a school garden, and opening a new library. In the remote Solukhumbu district, where the quakes destroyed 1,045 classrooms, The Small World has completed construction of 20 earthquake-safe classrooms serving nearly 1,000 students.

Beyond their classrooms, many schools suffered severe damage to other facilities like bathrooms. Environmental Camps for Conservation Awareness has been especially focused on restoring water, sanitation, and hygiene in earthquake-affected schools and recently reported the installation of new private toilets for students and teachers at the Jalpadevi Basic School in Dolakha. In addition to improving community health, access to private toilets helps boost student attendance, especially among girls who might otherwise skip during menstruation.

Not all damage wrought by the earthquakes is visible. In Nuwakot, one of the hardest-hit districts in eastern Nepal saw soaring rates of labor migration and child trafficking. To counteract these trends, Visible Impact launched a 9-month mentorship program for adolescent girls in Nuwakot aimed at fostering a new generation of community leaders. On top of academic tutoring, sexual and reproductive health classes, and leadership and entrepreneurship workshops, support from GlobalGivers allowed Visible Impact to add psychosocial services to their program to help participants cope with post-disaster trauma.

Thank you again for your inspiring generosity in supporting community-led recovery efforts in Nepal, and for making the smart choice to donate cash to vetted nonprofits after the earthquakes. While we are closing this fund at this time, I hope you’ll continue to follow the ongoing work of our partners by subscribing to their project updates.

Britt Lake + the GlobalGiving Team

Photo from Visible Impact
Photo from Visible Impact
Photo from The Small World
Photo from The Small World
Photo credit: Nepal Youth Foundation
Photo credit: Nepal Youth Foundation

In April of 2015, Nepal suffered its most destructive earthquake in eight decades, killing nearly 9,000 people. It’s been more than two and a half years since the quake but the recovery process is still very much underway. Being one of the poorest countries in the world, with a quarter of its population living on only five cents a day, Nepal has very few resources to handle a disaster of this scale. While the earthquake affected almost 3 million people, children were perhaps impacted the most. Nepalese children face specific challenges, especially those in rural villages. Luckily, our 89 nonprofit partners on the ground have been working tirelessly to implement solutions to these challenges that keep the children of Nepal happy, healthy, and safe while they learn and grow.

Keeping Kids in School
Education is crucially important during times of disasters because it ensures that children have a safe haven from trafficking, violence, and child labor. Over 36,000 classrooms were destroyed by the earthquake, leaving nearly 1 million children unable to attend school. Twenty earthquake-safe classrooms have been rebuilt by The Small World, and eight schools have been constructed by All Hands and Hearts, allowing thousands of children to resume their educations. Environmental Camps for Conservation Awareness has produced “All in One” book packages, which include a comprehensive range of subjects so that elementary students in rural areas can learn from home.

Lack of Electricity
Many remote areas of Nepal are devoid of grid electricity, so Environmental Camps for Conservation Awareness and Karuna-Shechen are distributing solar home lighting sets to rural residents. The lamps are charged by the sun during the day, and provide light in the evenings so kids can do their homework. After receiving a solar lamp set for her family, a young student named Sushila said, “We used to have to study in the dark. Now, there is light to study and we can do more work at home. We can also even listen to the radio while working. This has made our life easier and fun."

Trafficking + Child Labor
In order to mitigate child trafficking, Child Rescue Nepal broadcasts anti-trafficking radio jingles in a local Nepali dialect that teach children the importance of education and to not trust strangers. Child Rescue has also been providing intensive support to 17 rescued children who are now attending school regularly and living happily with their families after being reunited.

Even though child labor is illegal for children under 16, kids as young as three years old are found working in brick factories. The Advocacy Project removes these children from dangerous working environments and places them in school. Although brick factory work allows young kids to support their families, school is a much safer place for them. In Nepal, family is hugely valued and is central to one’s identity. Nepal Youth Foundation (NYF) believes that allowing orphaned or abandoned children to remain with their relatives is vital. They provide a stipend to families to help cover food, education, and healthcare costs for the children.

Basic Health + Hygiene
Keeping kids healthy is a priority throughout the world, but it is especially important after a disaster strikes. School health education programs, developed by Real Medicine Foundation, teach young students in Nepal about personal hygiene, proper handwashing, contagious vs. non-contagious diseases, and how to stay safe in disaster zones. Such programs also help to decrease drug or alcohol use, boost proper nutrition, prevent illness, and encourage exercise. Children’s fragile immune systems put them at higher risk of contracting infectious diseases. GlobeMed at Tufts University gave immunizations to 435 children and growth monitoring to 656 children throughout Nepal. Two optometry assistants with Global Reach International recently gave 200 children eye exams in a low-caste village, and your donations helped buy prescription glasses for them, which only cost around $8 each.

Support for Young Girls
Young girls have unique health, educational, and emotional challenges, and need additional support. Along with classrooms, many school bathrooms were destroyed in the earthquake. During reconstruction, Environmental Camps for Conservation Awareness built girl-friendly toilets to give girls privacy while at school. They have also equipped a school with a proper water facility and an incinerator to burn used sanitary pads. "With the new toilet facilities, the trend of being absent from school among menstruating female students will decrease,” says a female teacher. "We'll also be talking about it with the students, so they feel encouraged to come to school during menstruation cycle."

To help alleviate some of the challenges they face, BRAC USA created a club for teen girls in rural Nepal that provides a safe space where they can talk openly about culturally sensitive topics like violence, sexual and reproductive health, and women’s rights. “We never had such clubs before, especially for girls my age,” Anu, a club member says. “Girls do not generally speak their minds where I am from but, at the Kishori Club, we are encouraged to share. I learned that I can talk to people and ask questions. I found that there was a bigger world that I could live in,” she exclaims. The young girls who felt secluded after earthquake now have a strong safety net.

With the support of donors like you, our nonprofit partners have accomplished so much to help the children of Nepal. Together, we can empower Nepal’s youngest generation to get their educations and live happy, healthy lives for many years to come.

Acacia + the GlobalGiving Team

Photo credit: Diyalo Foundation
Photo credit: Diyalo Foundation
Photo credit: ECCA
Photo credit: ECCA
Photo credit: Nepal Youth Foundation
Photo credit: Nepal Youth Foundation
Photo credit: Diyalo Foundation
Photo credit: Diyalo Foundation
Devaka leads a thriving women
Devaka leads a thriving women's center in Nepal.

Dear Supporter,

Rita thanks you.

Devaka thanks you.

And Sanu thanks you.

Your decision to support locally driven nonprofits is having a lasting impact in their lives.

I traveled to Nepal in July to visit with Nepalese leaders on the front line of long-term disaster recovery efforts. In the aftermath of any disaster, women disproportionately suffer, and it is no different in Nepal. But my visit left me with hope. Because of supporters like you, women are also at the center of rebuilding efforts.

Your support is enabling Rita, Devaka, and Sanu’s impressive rebuilding efforts two years after a devastating earthquake struck Nepal, killing nearly 9,000 people, destroying more than 500,000 homes, and leaving some 2.8 million people in need of humanitarian assistance.

As major aid organizations scrambled to reach the hardest-hit communities after the 2015 earthquake, one nonprofit that you supported, Tewa, reached 120 communities in 15 affected-districts within 70 days, often delivering the first wave of relief in struggling remote villages.

Tewa mobilized a group of 22 Nepalese women named “Shadow Barefoot Volunteers.” They carried cash grants to earthquake-devastated communities and gave it away to survivors in $100 batches.

“We were told it would not be secure, but we felt whenever disaster strikes suddenly people become victims. But people are like you and I. Yes, we’d be in shock for a little while, but how would we lose our common sense and our integrity and whatever we hold dear? So, we just trusted that they knew what they most needed for themselves,” Rita Thapa, the founder of Tewa, told me.

“We met with the same success everywhere. You treat people like people and not victims, and they’ll respond like that,” Rita said.

Another nonprofit in Nepal, Institute of Cultural Affairs, also distributes grants to women with entrepreneurial goals (in partnership with the Jean Houston Foundation).

High above Kathmandu valley, in a hilltop village called Changunarayan, an ICA-funded women’s center is transforming the community. When I visited Changunarayan, I met a woman who makes sanitary napkins, by hand, to distribute to other rural communities where menstruation is still taboo. I met a woman who manages a thriving candy-making enterprise, using lapsi, a fruit native to Nepal. I met Devaka Shrestha, who runs the center, including its new library, and the grant program that is fueling it all.

“The community has changed a lot,” Devaka told me from a tidy room on the top floor of the center. “Instead of the men, the women are taking initiative. They're not limited to household activities.”

Backed by Tewa, women in another earthquake-devastated village outside of Kathmandu, Sindhupalchowk, are also stepping into new roles. One woman in the village recently ran for public office. This is exactly the kind of locally led progress that Rita has spent her whole life trying to foster.

“It’s women who are holding the peace in their communities. It’s women who are holding their communities together, and without focusing on them, there is nothing,” Rita said.

Sanu is holding her family together. Two years ago, their future was unclear. Sanu is a widow who makes a living as a farmer, and her crops were destroyed by heavy rains that pummeled the city of Kathmandu after the earthquake.

Two months ago, Sanu smiled as she gave me a tour of her thriving garden in Bhaktapur on the edge of Kathmandu Valley. The garden is filled with corn, tomatoes, and other lucrative vegetables. Sanu received an assortment of vegetable seeds from a GlobalGiving partner, Water, Agroforestry, Nutrition and Development Foundation (WAND). 

Sanu said her family now makes about $10–15 a day from farming—enough to send her grandchildren to a private school. The corn in her backyard towered above her head.

“I am happy now,” she said, surrounded by the yields of her hard work, paired with your generosity.

Thank you supporting women-led disaster recovery efforts. Thank you for being part of GlobalGiving’s Nepal Earthquake Relief and Recovery Fund.


Marlena Hartz + The GlobalGiving Team

Rita founded the trailblazing nonprofit, Tewa.
Rita founded the trailblazing nonprofit, Tewa.
Sanu restored her garden with GlobalGiving
Sanu restored her garden with GlobalGiving's help.
Photo by Aura Freedom International
Photo by Aura Freedom International

It’s been just two years since the world learned the shocking and sobering news that nearly 9,000 people were killed in the earthquake that struck Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal, and sent equally devastating shock waves into the most rural villages. Just two years since search and rescue teams looked nonstop for loved ones, since flattened infrastructure left remote areas isolated from receiving help, and since aftershocks rivaling the initial earthquake’s impact foiled relief efforts for consecutive months. And over the past two years more than 43,000 donors just like you stepped up and assisted an entire country by supporting GlobalGiving local nonprofit partners.

GlobalGiving is honored to work with 89 projects in Nepal that continue to rebuild a country after it suffered the most destructive earthquake in eight decades.The rebuilding process is extensive but your donations are making it possible! In honor of the two-year anniversary of the earthquake, starting April 25th at 9:00am EST GlobalGiving will be matching donations at 50% up to $1,000 USD per donor for projects that are providing disaster relief in Nepal! New recurring donations will be matched 100%!

Here are just a few updates from the projects that your past donations have supported and that will benefit from the match. Thank you for stepping up for them over the past two years!  

Journey Home Foundation has focused their efforts on supporting earthquake survivors in remote villages. In the past two years, they have distributed tents for temporary shelters, initiated a midwife training program in the absence of medical care, and most recently started a new water sanitation project.

Mindful Medicine Worldwide is close to completing a new clinic in the village of Chanaute. This will be the only healthcare facility of its kind in the surrounding area. Earlier this year, one of their clinic volunteers shared what rebuilding the community of Chanaute is like after the earthquake.

Aura Freedom International took action after the Shree Bhumimata secondary school was damaged by the earthquake. Aura Freedom began building a temporary school shelter and then constructed permanent classrooms. Their efforts has made it possible for 250 girls to receive an education they can count on!

The Ama Foundation supports children who found themselves without homes and without families after the earthquake. Your donations are giving children who have suffered unimaginable loss the emotional and physical care they deserve. This month they shared a story of a young boy who lost both of his parents in the earthquake.

The Mountain Fund has spent the past two years building schools, disaster centers, radio towers, and emergency shelters in Nepal. In a recent report, they said much of their work is spent addressing what very few people want to talk about- the next earthquake. Your donations are going toward programs that will help prevent loss and protecting lives if another natural disaster strikes in the future.

We are excited to honor the two-year anniversary of the Nepal Earthquake and all the work our nonprofit partners are doing to support those impacted through matching your donations starting April 25th. Thank you for your commitment and compassion!

Photo Credit: Peace Winds America
Photo Credit: Peace Winds America

Sometimes, progress comes in leaps and bounds. But, more often, progress is made through the slow, steady, herculean efforts of groups of people coming together to solve problems in their daily lives. Nowhere is this more true than in Nepal, where GlobalGiving’s nonprofit partners are working tirelessly to provide relief to those locals affected by the 2015 earthquake. Your donations to the Nepal Earthquake Relief Fund have made those efforts possible. From clean water to nutrition education to retrofitted homes - your generosity has made a tremendous impact. We want to share with you some of the recent progress that your donation has enabled in Nepal.

Edge of Seven is nearing the end of their construction and reconstruction of dozens of schools in Solukhumbu of Nepal east of Kathmandu and south of Mt. Everest.

GlobeMed at Tufts continues to rebuild Nepal’s infrastructure in rural communities and ensure students continue to receive an education.

International Medical Corps remains active in Nepal through their 7 nutrition stabilization centers, where they treat severe malnutrition and related medical issues.

A new water project has been started by Journey Home Foundation! The will be finding 50 local individuals to help them bring clean water to rural areas in Nepal. Clean water and local jobs!

Mindful Medicine Worldwide made significant progress on their clinic in Chanauta, completing the first floor and starting construction on the second.

Family support - the key to providing stability for children traumatized by the earthquake. Our Sansar has been providing goats and sewing machines to help families find a sustainable income source to feed their families.

Build Change continues to retrofit houses to become earthquake resistant. These residences will house those Nepali people still living in temporary housing, nearly 2 years after the earthquake.

Accountability Lab is working to close the feedback loop between earthquake survivors and relief providers, by gathering information and reporting that information back to key relief actors who use it to guide their support.

Peace Winds America is helping by providing job training, counseling and water and sanitation in Community Centers in Byasi, Khawa, and Nala, Nepal.

Everyday at GlobalGiving, we are so proud of the amazing work of our nonprofit partners in Nepal. And everyday, we’re so awestruck by you, our dedicated donors, who make it all possible!

Photo Credit: Accountability Lab
Photo Credit: Accountability Lab
Photo Credit: Build Change
Photo Credit: Build Change
Photo Credit: IMC
Photo Credit: IMC
Photo Credit: Our Sansar
Photo Credit: Our Sansar
Photo Credit: JHF
Photo Credit: JHF

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Location: Washington, D.C. - USA
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