Hilton Prize Coalition Commemorates One-Year Anniversary of 2015 Nepal Earthquake
April 25, 2016, marks the one-year anniversary of the devastating 7.8-magnitude earthquake that struck Nepal. The earthquake and aftershocks killed over 8,000 people and injured more than 21,000. The 12 Hilton Prize Laureates working on the ground – BRAC, Clubhouse International, ECPAT, Handicap International, Heifer International, HelpAge International, IRC, IRCT, MSF, Operation Smile, Partners in Health and SOS Children’s Villages – are making a collective impact towards recovery.
The earthquake and aftershocks in Nepal are the focus of the Hilton Prize Coalition's first Storytelling Program, which highlights six member organizations that were among those who mobilized in response to the earthquake: BRAC, Handicap International, Heifer International, HelpAge International, Operation Smile and SOS Children’s Villages.
Featured below are Coalition members in Nepal, with a glimpse into their successes and challenges during the past year.
Handicap International Nepal
Handicap International has been working in Nepal since 2000, employing 50 national staff and a host of emergency personnel. Following the 2015 earthquake and aftershocks, the organization continues to deliver rehabilitation sessions and provide walking aids in the seven districts. It also facilitates the supply of humanitarian aid to victims in isolated areas. Often living in extreme poverty and denied access to education, people with disabilities struggle to meet their most basic needs and exercise their rights.
Heifer International Nepal
Heifer Nepal initial assessments showed that more than 11,000 participants’ homes had collapsed and another 21,000 families’ homes sustained damage. More than 3,000 Heifer animals had died. In the year since, Heifer Nepal has successfully assisted more than 31,000 families in the rebuilding process.
HelpAge International Nepal
As is the case in most humanitarian disasters, older people are disproportionately affected. In the earthquake’s wake, HelpAge International was in Nepal delivering relief to the older people most in need. Working with local partners, the organization has reached tens of thousands of survivors, helping them rebuild homes, buy food to eat, and restore health and livelihoods.
SOS Children’s Villages Nepal
Working in Nepal since 1972, SOS Children was well-placed to rapidly respond to the needs of children and deliver lifesaving aid. The organization operates 10 Children’s Villages in Nepal, eight of which are located in areas badly affected by the earthquakes. One year later, SOS Children has assisted more than 17,800 vulnerable children and their families on their road to recovery.
In a recent Q&A piece, SOS Kavre alum Amul Thapa, a photojournalist and current Hilton Prize Coalition Fellow, reflected on his work during the earthquake and aftershocks and his experiences as a photographer during the disaster.