Christian Group Tearfund Building Earthquake-Resilient Homes in Nepal

KATMANDU – At four minutes before noon on April 25, 2015, Nepal was hit by a 7.8 magnitude earthquake with its epicenter about 48 miles northwest of the capital city of Katmandu. It was the worst natural disaster to hit Nepal in more than 80 years and the deadliest day in the region’s recorded history. Less than a month later, May 12, 2015, the country was struck again by a magnitude 7.3 quake near Mt. Everest.

9,000 people in Nepal, northern India, China, and Bangladesh died.

25,000 people were injured.

2.8 million people were displaced as thousands of homes were destroyed.

The country is still recovering as it approached the third anniversary of the massive disaster. Christian agencies and other NGOs continue to assess needs and assist in the ongoing recovery effort.

Tearfund is leading an effort to build permanent, earthquake-resilient homes in the Makwanpur region to replace those destroyed in the quakes.

In addition to building 108 such homes to date, Tearfund has turned the program into a teaching experience by training 150 government engineers the principles of erecting quake-resilient structures and providing hand-on training to more than 700 local masons in the practical application of the building techniques.

One 78-year old widow told reporters, “Now that I am old, it is good to have a strong house to spend my days in. My old house was only made of mud and stone, but this house has layers of concrete reinforcements.”

Tearfund’s Country Director in Nepal explained, “Over the past three years, we’ve been working with the most vulnerable in the community to fix the damage done to homes, water supplies, toilet facilities, and livelihoods.”

As of April 25, 2017, Tearfund had

  • Built 696 new houses
  • Provided access to clean water and sanitation for nearly 4,000 people
  • Helped nearly 3,000 people regain a livelihood through agriculture
  • Provided “friendly space” for 1,300 children to protect them from human trafficking predators

Disasters happen. Recovery is a journey. Tearfund is helping Nepalese recover and helping to reduce the potential damage of future quakes in this quake-prone region.


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