KATHMANDU, Nepal, April 29, 2015 /CNW/ - World Vision is rushing supplies to those in need in Nepal, days after an earthquake hit the country, causing widespread death and damage. More than 5,000 lives have been lost and 8 million people are affected by the quake. Many need immediate help including food, water and temporary shelter. The death toll is expected to rise as response teams continue to trek to the most remote areas near the epicentre.
World Vision has already distributed supplies that were pre-positioned in Nepal and, over the coming days, the aid agency will work to meet the immediate needs of 100,000 people by providing first aid kids, sleeping mats, blankets, water, temporary shelter and protection for children. Flights from Dubai with much needed relief supplies are having difficulties landing at the Kathmandu airport, which is highly congested and because of the risk of continued aftershocks.
"My first days here in Nepal have been filled with deep sadness for the children and families who have lost so much in the quake. Families are crowding into open-air tent cities where the risk of disease is growing and vital supplies are starting to run low. At the same time, I admire the incredible resiliency of World Vision staff in Nepal. Many of our staff members are caring for and helping others at a time when they and their families are living in their cars or in tents." – Michael Messenger, incoming president of World Vision Canada, currently in Nepal.
"Coordination between relief agencies will be vital in this response. By organizing our efforts with other NGO's, local authorities, and the communities themselves, we can make sure the most-needed items reach survivors as quickly as possible, without duplication of effort." – Bart Witteveen, Director, Humanitarian and Emergency Affairs, World Vision Canada, currently in Nepal.
"We're grateful for the outpouring of generosity we've seen from Canadians thus far in responding to our appeal for funds for humanitarian relief efforts in Nepal. We hope as many people as possible will donate to our appeal between now and May 25th as the Government of Canada is matching donations received by registered charities like World Vision. Canadians are rising to the challenge, and we hope they will continue to step up to help the survivors of this disaster."– Michael Messenger, incoming president of World Vision Canada, currently in Nepal.
Please visit here to see photos of the impact of the quake in Kathmandu and World Vision's response
World Vision's Response:
- World Vision has activated airlifts of supplies from neighbouring countries, including tarps, blankets, jerry cans, pre-fab tents. However, these airlifts have been delayed due to congestion at Nepal's only international airport.
- World Vision will target an initial 100,000 people (20,000 families) in the worst-affected areas of Bhaktapur, Gorkha, Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Lamjung. The scale and scope of the agency's response may increase pending assessments of the situation.
- World Vision's priority is to address the immediate needs of children, including the establishment of Child-Friendly Spaces to help them deal with the trauma and distress caused by the earthquake.
- World Vision first started its development initiatives in Nepal in 1982. World Vision Nepal has 73 projects managed by 205 staff, and supports 27,000 sponsored children.
What Canadians can do:
Canadians wishing to support World Vision's emergency response in Nepal can text "AID" to 45678 to donate $20, or donate by online at worldvision.ca, or by calling 1-866-595-5550.
Michael Messenger is available for interviews with Canadian media from Nepal.
World Vision is a Christian relief, development and advocacy organization dedicated to working with children, families and communities to overcome poverty and injustice. World Vision serves all people regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender. Visit our News Centre at worldvision.ca.
SOURCE World Vision Canada
For further information: Bob Neufeld, Emergency Communications Manager, 647-622-2045 or 905-565-6200 ext. 3265, [email protected]; Britt Hamilton, 416-419-1321 or 905-565-6200 ext. 3973, [email protected]