On 25th April 2015, Nepal lost more than 9,000 lives and saw some of its most significant heritages crumble to ground. With 23,000 people injured and more than 500,000 houses partially or completely damaged, development agency’s role became even more prominent.
BATAS Foundation, in its bid to do whatever little it could, swung into immediate action. Right from the second day following the disaster, a team of 25 volunteers set off for three earthquake hard hit zones – Sankhu, Sindhupalchok and Nuwakot in order to distribute relief funds.
Soon after, Islamic Relief Worldwide based in United Kingdom (IRW-UK), an INGO working in the humanitarian field, decided to partner with BATAS Foundation recognizing the Foundation’s profound interest and strong intent to support earthquake survivors. IRW helped implement several activities in three affected districts of Nepal – Kathmandu, Nuwakot and Sindhupalchok.
By the end of December 2015, the Foundation had successfully implemented two phases of activities. Phase One comprised of relief distributions (beginning from 1 May to 31 July 2015) by which food and non food items (NFIs), tarps and tents were successfully distributed to affected people based on their needs assessment. In the same period, roster of volunteers, experts and specialists were also created. A range of trainings and capacity building programmes were conducted by experienced IRW team and outside experts in order to improve the staffs’ capacity.
Under Phase Two beginning from 1 August to 31 October 2015, the foundation primarily focused on early recovery activities whereby more than 2,244 temporary shelter and 52 classrooms were constructed in two selected districts (Nuwakot and Sindhupalchowk) of Nepal.
Special focus was given to community learning centers. Not just were Temporary Learning Centers (TLCs) constructed, series of child protection programs were also implemented at the school level. Furthermore, in collaboration with AEPC (Alternative Energy Promotion Centre) and Sunfarmers, solar lights and few educational items were also installed at the TLCs.
In collaboration with IRW, BATAS recently supported 962 households in Nuwakot and Sindhupalchok for winterisation. The households were provided with one winter package each comprising of winter items including blankets, jackets, socks, winter slippers, woollen caps, mittens, shawls, P. E. Foam and stoe with chimney. While monitoring the distribution, DDRC and CDO at Nuwakot marked the Foundation’s performance as ‘excellent.’
With national priority shifting towards reconstruction and rehabilitation, BATAS too has shifted its accordingly. Thus in collaboration with Lutheran World Federation, the Foundation has already begun its work at Rasuwa District for constructing permanent earthquake resistant houses for earthquake survivors.