When the earthquake struck Nepal it was exciting news. We were glued to the media to view pictures of the destruction and the rescue missions as an estimated 8 million Nepalese were effected by the quakes: from loss of lives, to loss of homes, to loss of incomes. We, too, grieved over the loss of lives, and many of us committed donations to help restore Nepal. And then we went about our lives. That is the way of most disasters.
But what now? How has CCODER risen to action since the earthquake, and how has it served the villagers in its seven districts?
There is an inspiring quote by famed environmentalist, David Orr, which reads: “Hope is a verb with its shirt sleeves rolled up.” Nepal’s two major massive earthquakes and their aftershocks has friends and supporters of CCODER rolling up their shirt sleeves to help rebuild.
CCODER had to immediately change direction to serve its people. Long term plans had to be shelved so that aid could reach the villages. In the Gorkha District alone, the earthquakes demolished 98% of the homes, schools, health posts and community buildings. Aid has been coordinated with government agencies and relief organizations to secure tin roofing to provide immediate make-shift shelter for families and the schools to ward off the rains from the monsoons. But these are not permanent, and the need to rebuild and re-envision is at hand. In the midst of their trauma, villagers are forced to gather together, join hands and get to work to re-think what is needed. There is no way out but through. CCODER is a leading organizational force and programs are beginning to resurface.
There is an immediate need to rebuild the 17 schools in the Gorkha district. Education has been a corner stone of village development for CCODER, and approximately 4,000 children in the Gorkha District need a school. Though crude structures have been erected, permanent buildings are needed.
Step by step, friends and supporters from around the world have been gathering in support of CCODER’s efforts. Franziska Wirtz-Konigshausen and her German organization, Nepalshulprojekt, has raised over $26,000 to rebuild the Lamidanda school and its seven classrooms. This is a great show of support for the children.
Schools, health posts, homes and community buildings are all needed. The broader picture is to create a model village. With everything in disarray, a new vision is being called forth. Many people have been displaced from their home villages, and with 98% of the structures gone, there is no greater time to roll up the shirt sleeves and re-think the future.
CCODER has a strong foundation with more than 25 years of village development. CCODER’s education and economic development programs are starting up again and the villagers are being called forth to recover themselves, gather and move forward and look again to their future. Activities are now resuming. This is the truest testimony of the determination of CCODER and the people it serves.
In the coming posts, summaries of these activities will be hosted. Thank you for your interest in CCODER.