May 25, 2015: A Special Report and Appeal from SeedTree

In the aftermath of Nepal's Earthquakes

The Mountains Roar:

On April 25, the subterranean pressure building under the Indian and Eurasian plates since 1934 let loose in Gorkha, Nepal. The resulting 7.8 magnitude earthquake shot east along the plate boundary through our project districts of Dhading, Kathmandu, and Sindhupalchowk. An estimated 8,600 people died, over 100,000 injured and countless left homeless. Sindhupalchowk accounted for 42% of all deaths, 90% of its homes and schools left in rubble or rendered inhabitable.

Our Central Mountains Manager Ram Gautam was visiting project sites in Sindhupalchowk when the quake struck. Nearly thrown from his motorbike, he escaped harm and remained in the community to assess the unimaginable damage during the next few days. All are deeply shaken, most still in makeshift shelters. Thousands of families and homes are shattered (including Ram's).

Hearing that aid had not yet reached the District, SeedTree sent Ram with emergency food aid to our groups, until relief NGOs were able to begin a response. We are now focusing on how to best help these stricken communities and households through our established network to rebuild in a more self-reliant, self-determined way for the long term.

Fear lingers, as aftershocks continue on a daily basis with several major earthquakes in their own right. Indeed on May 12, a 7.3 quake struck even nearer to our project area. Again on his motorbike, Ram narrowly avoided collision. Seed Tree Nepal's Bishnu BK, also on the scene, described it as “terrible, like a bombardment of landslides."

In the aftermath of Nepal's Earthquakes SeedTree's Central Mountains Region Branch Manager Ram Gautam surveys damage in Sindhupalchow. Ram distributes SeedTree emergency food to 310 families. Our reconstruction relief will reach many more.

Despite such hazards, Ram has returned again to the hardest hit districts of Sindhupalchowk and Dhading to conduct Participatory Appraisal with 16 of our groups, conferring with group members, facilitators, community leaders and VDC secretariats. Please consider making a donation to support SeedTree's earthquake reconstruction relief efforts, including:

  • Helping 450 families by supplying seed of carrot, spinach, radish, cauliflower, beans, and tomatoes
  • Providing SeedTree groups with needed tools to share
  • In 285 destroyed homes reconstruct improved, smokeless, fuel-saving cook stoves,
  • 350 people will plant 150 fruit trees each in the hardest hit region, in addition to the trees in our 11 SeedTree nurseries already established in the Districts. These will not only provide food, but help stabilize and rehabilitiate the disrupted soil

With your support we can also provide biogas energy systems late in the year, after the monsoon-soaked soils dry.

With 20 years of continuous experience in Nepal, our long-established field program assures that your donation makes the most impact. SeedTree can also assure accountability, channeling our support in a way that is public, frugal and fair. We have a tight “chain of custody." Importantly, our giving will be to self-qualified villagers who are ready to appreciate and use well what we can provide. We can cover most operations out of our ongoing program and mobilized volunteer support, minimizing cost. Building on this capacity, your contributions can provide:

  • $5 provides vegetable seed packs - containing 6 species
  • $3-10 provides tools to enable planting
  • $15 provides improved cook stoves
  • $10 can plant 80 trees
  • $40 can, along with Government subsidy, provide one home biogas plant.

A generous donor has pledged to match donations to SeedTree up to $9000. Your donation will secure matching funds. To date we have received $1,270 toward this Relief. Help us meet our target, and play a role in helping these communities recover from devastation.

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