Retrofitted buildings provide a safe space during the earthquake

The retrofitting project of World Vision has proved to be a successful one as it withstood the recent Nepal earthquake.

May 22, 2015, 5:45 p.m. Published in Magazine Issue: Vol: 08 No. -22 May 22- 2015 (Jestha 08, 2072)

“When we saw that there was no damage to the retrofitted hospital building we thought of taking refuge there and then moved in there. My house is all cracked and very dangerous to go inside, I have two grandchildren and they are small so we needed a safe place for them, so I had no option than to move in here for now,” says Ganga Khadki . She is a grandmother of two and she was sleeping with them when the earthquake struck she shares it was one of the most horrific days of her life. The house actually is her parental house and the one where she is grew up. The wrinkles on her face and her white hair clearly shows her age and the sadness in her face as she frowns. She points out formthe window of the health post to show her house which is nearby and tries to show all the cracks that have occurred in her house. Ganga was so much scared that she actually fell unconscious after she came out of her house with her grandchildren and when she woke up all she can remember is her grandchildren crying the whole day because of the aftershock on and the fear they had.

SaraswatiMijal, a mother of two also is staying in the health post building shares that she feels safe in the retrofitted building which survived the earthquake. Her six year old son Rishav says, “I don’t want to go back home because I feel safe and I enjoy being here”

Saraswati shares how the community at first felt when World Vision started retrofitting the health post in the beginning. “We all thought why they were spending so much of money on this old building. They were drilling the walls and putting rods in it. Actually i thought it was waste of money and time on making that old building. I thought it would have been better if they had built a new building than working on that old one. But now I we know its importance,” she says.

The retrofitting project of World Vision has proved to be a successful one as it withstood the recent Nepal earthquake. While most of the houses around are damaged or have collapsed the Bungmati Health post that was retrofitted is sheltering several families. Initially there were 16 families living in the health post and with the aftershocks this has become their temporary shelter and safe space.

World Vision has funded the seismic retrofitting of the health post in Bungmati VillageDevelopment Committee, Lalitpur and three schools in Dukuchap, Bishankhunarayan,Godamchaur VDCs under the Lalitpur earthquake preparedness project.

“We are verythankful to World Vision for supporting us with this as this has now proved that this project was a successful one. The community people have availed a lot not just as a shelter,  but also that we have been able to provide service to the injured people of this and our neighboringareas immediately after the earthquake”, says KedarBasnet, health post in-charge of Bungmati health post.

School and hospital safety is one of the five priorities of Government of Nepal.Recognising its importance World VisionDisaster Risk Management Project has completed retrofittingwork  in Sunsari and retrofitting workfor schools in Sunsari and Kailali are ongoing at present.

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