Nepal: relief from confinement gives way to a violent monsoon

20 Jun, 2021

While the sanitary situation is slightly improving and the confinement is getting lighter, Nepal is facing violent floods at the beginning of the monsoon. Between patience and determination, we adapt our activities.

Maya Verbist, PE&D's Nepal Director, gives us an update on the situation:

"The health situation seems to be improving, the hospitals are less overwhelmed. At least that's what we see in Kathmandu and the other big cities, but it's hard to have a realistic view of what's happening in the remote villages. People are still reluctant to be tested for fear of being stigmatized. Private vehicles are allowed to drive on the streets according to the odd-even rule, and so-called non-essential stores are reopened on certain days and at certain times. These new rules are in effect until June 28. However, inter-district travel is still prohibited and schools are still closed. With the flooding and the gathering of evacuees in safe places, such as tents and schools, we are concerned that Covid is gaining ground again."

Indeed, since a few days, Nepal is facing violent floods. Mohan, the director of our partner Child Nepal, testifies in pictures of the devastation caused by the waters in Melamchi (north east of Katmadou). If his family is safe, many others had to be relocated in temporary tents and schools.

In terms of activities, we are adapting to these situations. We have decided to repeat the virtual classroom program launched at the end of last year in Kathmandu.

The only positive point is that the pupils of the Maternelle de l'Espoir seem to be just as motivated in view of the information and videos that we have received. Out of the 30 children registered, 20 are present in each virtual class, and we are thinking of opening a second class if the number of registered children increases. On the other hand, in spite of our will to widen the device to the children of the public schools of the city, it proves to be complicated because the families lack access to Internet.

Finally, concerning the new Chepang Home, which allows 30 young girls from this isolated community to continue their studies in the city: the work is slowly resuming because the builders can once again move around the region a little. On the other hand, we unfortunately have no idea when the schools will reopen in the country and therefore when we will be able to welcome the girls in the hostel.

We would like to say that the hardest part is behind us, but it is still too early to say...