A massive 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Nepal in April 2015, just northwest of the capital of Kathmandu. It was the worst quake to strike the region in more than 80 years, killing thousands of people and injuring thousands more.
Millions of people were affected by the earthquake and the damage was devastating, toppling historic temples in Kathmandu and destroying entire rural villages. The suffering was compounded by a second major quake of 7.3 that struck less than a month later.
Hundreds of thousands of terrified people lost their homes and loved ones. And the disaster disproportionately affected poorer residents, who lived in mud and stone houses that crumbled and are in hard-to-reach areas of the mountainous terrain.
While still recovering from the earthquakes in 2015, Nepal faced another natural disaster in 2017. In August, widespread flooding from the heaviest monsoon season in over a decade ravaged the southern part of the country, affecting nearly 2 million people and displacing tens of thousands.
Nepal remains one of the poorest countries in the world, and frequent natural disasters like earthquakes and floods are especially devastating to families with few resources to protect themselves and recover.
- One in four people live in poverty.
- One in three adults have a bank account — half the global average.
- Money sent home from relatives in other countries accounts for 30 percent of Nepal's GDP.
More than 40 percent of Nepal's population are between the ages of 18 and 35, and nearly half of them are unemployed. Many young people are likely to leave the country, discouraged by insufficient education and employment opportunities and lacking the confidence to play productive leadership roles in their communities. Approximately 1,500 people between 18 and 35 migrate every day in search of better opportunities.
- Emergency response: Delivered emergency supplies and cash to families affected by the April 2015 earthquake. Distributed essentials such as blankets, basic hygiene kits and water purification tablets to families affected by the August 2017 flooding. Helping families rebuild stronger, safer homes.
- Agriculture & Food: Improving incomes of smallholder farmers with the production of high-value crops like ginger, cardamom and potato.
- Economic opportunity: Increasing access to loans and savings for marginalized people in remote areas. Providing financial knowledge so people can invest in their homes and futures.
- Women & Gender: Teaching financial literacy so women can develop and expand their small businesses.
- Disaster preparedness: Training communities to identify risks, build protections against floods, and educate residents on emergency response and coordination.
- Education: Helping girls stay in school and connecting them with skills and opportunities to find jobs and start businesses
Nepal: When your man goes to India
The Nepali women we’ve been talking to don’t complain. Or not like I imagine most of us would if we were faced with the hardships they endure — on their own — every day. They live a long way from any services or resources.
Nepal: A grueling life on top of the world
Yes, Nepal is so, so beautiful.
Nepal: Upheaval is unsettling, but it brings the possibility of change, and peace
Nepal: It's hard to see your country slide backwards
Last night we had tea with our friend Bal, a Nepali entrepreneur who has a remittances and web portal business here in Kathmandu. He told us how hard it was to see Nepal going backwards. The roads in the capital are deeply rutted and eroded.
Nepal: Bamboo and bio-engineering interventions for mitigation of riverbank erosion
Floods are a major hazard in Nepal contributing to endemic poverty, an occurrence that is likely to increase and magnify due to climate change.
Nepal: Making Disaster Risk Reduction a reality
Nepal: Nourishing Opportunity
Nepal: The promise of cardamom, part 1
Nepal: The promise of cardamom, part 2
Nepal: Helping Poor Farmers
In Nepal today, more than half the population has no access to even the most basic financial services. In rural areas, farming families are trapped in cycles of debt and are often forced to sell their crops at below market rates, further slipping into poverty.