This time we got a local driver from Rasuwa, so our truck had no problem carrying 10 tonnes of supplies: rice, blankets, tarps, salt & some nutri-nuggets.
Areas we covered – Thade, Bokejhunda, Sole, Bhimali, Gumchit Odarbasti. Needless to say, this is a drop in the ocean and many areas, especially in Upper Rasuwa, have yet to receive relief.
80-year-old Lachhin Sangmo Gurung from Dhimali (Dhunchhe-4). Her children and grandchildren work as migrant labourers in different countries and no longer contact her. So she has to support and look after the three kids in the family (her great grandchildren). The villagers, who are themselves in a dire situation, requested us to give her extra supplies.
Bikdenra Lama lost his six-month-old baby in the quake.
Tempa Tsering lost his sister (17) and brother (14) and his one-year-old child in the quake. When the quake struck, his brother, who was playing in an open field, ran inside the house for safety and the house immediately collapsed on him. We heard similar stories in other quake-hit districts too. Apparently teachers/trainers had taught schoolchildren to hide under a table/bed during an earthquake without explaining that that in itself does not guarantee safety.
Women carry babies in baskets
Nepal Red Cross was distributing tarps at the same time
We could not make it to Gatlang, so we left the food supplies and tarps with the local coordinator, to be delivered the next day. (But unlike in other areas, in Gatlang each sack of rice will have to be split between two households. Hope that will last them at least a couple of weeks.)
Sabdol Tamang of Palepa (Ramche-6) has four children. Her husband, Sukuram Tamang, was in Langtang carrying trekkers’ bags when a mudslide triggered by the earthquake buried him. His body has not been found yet. Her house is completely destroyed. Her one-month-old baby is sick.
Regular relief supplies (rations, tents, etc.) are essential but we realized it’s also important to bring supplies targeted to women’s needs (as far as possible). Thanks to a friend who has contributed money specifically for quake-affected mothers in need, we were able to provide small cash gifts and/or some essential supplies to several mothers.
Lanam Ghale lost his 14-year-old son in the quake.
Trishuli-1 Hydropower Project in Haku VDC, Ward No. 9. According to our local source, 87 workers from Rolpa, Rukum and Dang districts and 76 locals were killed when a quake-triggered mudslide occurred not far from this site. At least six are still missing.
Settlements perched on these slopes were completely destroyed. The bare hillside in the picture used to be a settlement.
Former CA member Prem Tamang. We were told he has been working hard to bring relief to people in Rasuwa. He helped us coordinate everything. We also got a glimpse of the current CA member (Janardhan Dhakal), passing through Kalikasthan in a Prado.
One of the three large campsites in Betrawati, Nuwakot. People from at least five wards in Rasuwa are now living here. Most of them have no home or village to return to. A young man who saw people from Haku VDC fleeing from their village said, “Some of them were running with 3 or 4 children on their backs and arms. Even we couldn’t help crying.”
Butti Tamang from Haku-9 lost her husband, home and village in the quake. She has three children; the youngest is a few weeks old. Like most women we met, she does not speak or understand Nepali well. Some local Tamang men translated for us.
Norchi Tamang from Haku-9. She lost four members of her family: daughter, two daughters-in-law, and father-in-law. She is now looking after her three grandchildren. The youngest (9 months) would not stop crying. When I asked if he was sick, someone said, “No, he’s just missing his mother.”