12 May 2015 - 11:05am
The Salvation Army's emergency response team in Nepal has carried out its first large-scale distribution, taking essential food items to members of remote mountain communities.
Helped by some local volunteers, team members in Kathmandu loaded a truck with rice, dhal, oil and salt and drove it to Sindupalchok District. The district is not far from Kathmandu but remains one of the least developed areas of Nepal.
The earthquake has made all journeys very difficult, meaning that the distribution team, including local volunteers and members of the SAVN.tv film crew, took more than four hours to reach their destination, arriving at nightfall. The distribution centre was at a resort that usually hosts tourists looking to take part in activities such as bungee jumping and rafting. In recent years the area has become famous for its white-water rafting.
Heavy bags of food had to be carried up some stairs and across a 160-metre-long footbridge – an exhausting job! The owner of the resort was very supportive, not only allowing the Salvation Army to use her facilities for storage and distribution but also accommodating and feeding the team overnight.
The distribution was planned for late morning once the rest of the emergency team had arrived. Over the next few hours they distributed a total of 6,750kg rice, 1,125kg dhal, 450 litres of oil and 225kg of salt to 445 households in nine villages. All the villages are fairly remote which means many of the beneficiaries would have had to carry the food up the mountain for several hours. Despite these difficulties, however, the recipients were extremely grateful for the support they received.
Damaris Frick (Field Operations Officer, International Emergency Services, International Headquarters) says: 'I would like to express my gratitude to the international and local team members who are all working tirelessly, and also to the Salvation Army territories and other donors from all across the world who support this important work. Because of your generosity, 445 families will have something to eat tonight and for the coming days.'
Please visit here to make a donation in support of The Salvation Army's #NepalEarthquake appeal.