It is shared efforts and responsibility in addressing outstanding humanitarian needs in Nepal.
Marking the World Humanitarian Day, aid community in Nepal saluted contributions made by good-willed individuals and communities themselves to saving lives and alleviating the suffering in the aftermath of the back-to-back earthquakes.
The response launched by the Government of Nepal in the immediate aftermath of the disasters has seen significant support from the international and humanitarian communities and private sector alike. Scores of volunteers remained on the forefront of the response ever since as well.
“Achieving as much as we have to date would have been impossible without the leadership of the Government and the commitment of the people and communities of Nepal themselves,” said Jamie McGoldrick, Humanitarian Coordinator in Nepal. “I am truly heartened by the outpour of solidarity and compassion we have witnessed; proving that humanity can transcend social and economic barriers.”
To date, more than 340,000 families who lost their homes were provided with emergency shelter and another 170,000 households received materials to improve their damaged dwellings. Food assistance was delivered to over 2 million people and some 2 million people continue to benefit from sustained water and sanitation support. Basic medical services were re-established in 99.8 per cent of the community healthcare centres.
Yet, the needs remain significant. Hundreds of thousands of survivors still require basic shelter, food and livelihoods support, water and sanitation, and protection. The monsoon season is adding to the complexity of the situation by aggravating the logistical challenges and further exposing the affected to cold and damp weather conditions. Plans are also being put in place to ensure the survival of those affected through the fast-approaching winter. “Providing assistance to the survivors is our collective responsibility,” said Mr. McGoldrick.
“The many pre-existing vulnerabilities which were exacerbated by the quakes will not go away on their own. Addressing the existing humanitarian needs and providing an enabling environment for communities to lead the recovery and reconstruction efforts is key to preventing any future loss of life.” To date, the international community provided some US$ 225 million (or 53 per cent) in support of the $422-million humanitarian appeal. An additional $227 million was received in the form of bilateral and in-kind support.
According to a press release issued by UNIC, August 19 marks the anniversary of the 2003 United Nations Headquarters bombing in Baghdad that claimed the lives of 22 people. In an effort to raise awareness of humanitarian assistance worldwide – and the people who risk their lives to provide it - the United Nations General Assembly in 2008 designated August 19 as World Humanitarian Day.