3 things to know about how we’re helping in Nepal

By Anna Kramer

1. As of today, many people are still in dire need.

People living in temporary tents and shelters made from tarpaulins battle heavy afternoon rains at the Tundikhel camp in Kathmandu, Nepal. Photo: Aubrey Wade/Oxfam

The earthquake that struck Nepal on April 25 may be over, but survivors still face serious hardships. The quake affected an estimated 8 million people, and as of today’s estimate, at least 5,000 lost their lives. More than 10,000 are injured, with many others thought to remain trapped inside buildings.

Meanwhile, about 34,000 people are living in makeshift camps without water or toilets. Thousands more are sleeping outside because they’re too scared to return home in case of more aftershocks. Hundreds of thousands have been suddenly left without adequate food and medical care

2. Oxfam is rushing in aid, including clean water.

Oxfam volunteer Shekhar Khadka, 23, works to erect an 11,000-liter water tank at the Tundikhel camp for displaced people in Kathmandu, Nepal. He is one of 500 volunteers trained to react in the event of an earthquake by Oxfam's urban risk management program. "I'm sleeping under canvas outside our house but my family are safe," said Khadka. "I became a volunteer because I wanted to serve my community. The big challenges that lie ahead: supplying food, water, health care, and the scarcity of food." Photo: Aubrey Wade/Oxfam
After a disaster like this, people have many urgent needs—emergency food, shelter, clean water, and sanitation facilities. Oxfam helps in a number of ways, depending on what families need most. We work with local partner organizations and local people to try and be sure the aid we deliver fits the context.

Clean water and sanitation are especially important for preventing the spread of disease in crowded camps. Oxfam is coordinating with other groups in Nepal to provide these essentials quickly and efficiently. For example, Oxfam just installed an 11,000-liter water tank (pictured above) in Kathmandu’s Tundikhel camp, which shelters about 15,000 people. We are also looking into repairing and fixing existing water sources and installing new pumps and wells. 

3.  We’re trying to reach people wherever they are.

Sangita Kafle and her three-year-old son are now living at the Tundhikel camp for displaced people in Kathmandu. "Now we have nowhere to live. That's my biggest worry," she said. "In my home village, all the [houses] belonging to my family are destroyed." Photo: Aubrey Wade/Oxfam

"Oxfam is already reaching tens of thousands of earthquake survivors in camps across Kathmandu but it's vital that we can also get shelter, water and food to the huge numbers of people in hard-to-reach rural areas,” said Oxfam humanitarian manager Orla Murphy.

There are huge logistical challenges getting help to vulnerable people in these remote villages. Congestion at Nepal’s only international airport, roads blocked by landslides, and fuel shortages are making it difficult to transport aid to scattered communities across difficult mountainous terrain.

Despite these challenges, Oxfam is doing everything we can to reach people in need as quickly as possible. With your support, we aim to reach at least 350,000 people affected by the earthquake. 

Help rush life-saving aid to earthquake survivors.

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