An Update on Nepal Relief

By Naomi Gleit, VP of Product Management, Social Good

After the earthquakes in Nepal earlier this year, 770,000 people from 175 countries came together on Facebook to offer their support. Because of them, $15.5 million was raised to benefit International Medical Corps’s relief efforts on the ground.

As we approach six months after these efforts began, the Facebook Social Good team wants to update the community on how International Medical Corps has used their donations to help 210,000 people through the following activities:

Restoring health care systems
Nearly 450 health facilities were completely destroyed during the earthquakes. Another 700 were partially damaged. By operating mobile and static rehab facilities and rebuilding damaged facilities, International Medical Corps provided medical care, training and supplies that helped more than 150,000 people.

Preventing disease
During the monsoon season, International Medical Corps’ Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) team focused on interventions critical to help prevent the spread of communicable diseases, particularly as rains took their toll on people staying in damaged shelter or outdoors. To date, International Medical Corps has built 798 emergency latrines and 224 hand washing stations in communities, as well as in sites for displaced men, women and children.

Helping families meet nutrition needs
International Medical Corps supplied small cash grants of $75 to 5,656 families who lost everything during the earthquakes. These grants helped each family access urgent supplies like food, cooking oils and materials for temporary shelter. An additional 6,960 families benefitted from the distribution of 1,392 healthy family kits that included rice, lentils, blankets, mosquito nets and hygiene supplies. Another 12,701 families received tools and seeds for future harvests.

Addressing mental health needs
International Medical Corps and its local partners, Transcultural Psychosocial Organization Nepal and Integrated Community Development Campaign, are ensuring that the long term mental health needs of people affected by the two major earthquakes and more than 350 aftershocks over a 4.0 magnitude are addressed. To date, more than 567 first responders have been trained in psychological first aid.

Protecting women
By partnering with local organization Women’s Rehabilitation Center, International Medical Corps granted 268,388 women and girls access to services set up to address gender-based violence and reproductive health through the creation of 10 female safe spaces in two of the most earthquake-affected districts.

An additional matching grant of $2 million from Facebook was used to fund local organizations in Nepal — Give2Asia, in partnership with Facebook, is distributing these funds to support ongoing relief and rebuilding efforts like restoring electricity to rural areas, building semi-permanent shelters and classrooms to replace damaged schools, providing psychosocial training for teachers, and providing improved construction training to crews rebuilding across Nepal.

This week, everyone who donated to support Nepal on Facebook will receive a notification which includes a thank-you video. We want to show people what their donations provided by introducing them to some of the people they helped and the heroes they enabled, like Amir Thapa, who joined International Medical Corps’ WASH team just a few days after the earthquake hit. Amir has since become a full-time International Medical Corps staff member and because of the funds raised by the Facebook community, his work has helped International Medical Corps make a difference for more than 210,000 people after the earthquake and has kept outbreaks of deadly diseases, like cholera, from growing in Nepal.

When tragedy strikes it’s more important than ever for people to be able to connect, because together, we can do more good in the world.

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