7th Anniversary of Gorkha Earthquake: UK continues to help Nepalis cope and recover from future shocks

I am very proud that the UK has been able to help so many people recover from the 2015 Earthquake: Nicola Pollitt, British Ambassador to Nepal

Photo: Purnima Nepal

NL Today

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Kathmandu: The British Embassy’s post-earthquake reconstruction program has helped more than one million people recover from the devastating impacts of the 2015 Gorkha Earthquakes.

Marking the 7th year anniversary of the Gorkha earthquakes, the Embassy said, ‘The Embassy has spent over £100 million in responding to the 2015 Earthquakes in Nepal. Its support has reached over one million people. Other UK support has provided an additional £100 million for Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Adaptation in Nepal to help further build Nepal’s resilience.”

On 25 April 2015, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake rocked Nepal, causing widespread damage to infrastructure and loss of life.

Following the earthquake, the Embassy started implementing the program in partnership with the government. Over 80 percent of Nepal’s population is at risk from natural hazards, including climate-related shocks and earthquakes.

Since its inception, the UK government’s post-earthquake recovery and reconstruction support has achieved several milestones targeting earthquake-affected and vulnerable communities, according to a statement issued by the Embassy.

The support includes providing over 250,000 people with access to water, helping over 37,000 vulnerable people recover from lost livelihoods, rebuilding over 350 km of trails and bridges, and improving access to roads, helping over 300 small and medium enterprises to develop, and supporting 22 local governments to deliver on their planning processes.

Similarly, the program also facilitated the enrolment of approximately 450,000 people with damaged houses in the Government’s Housing Reconstruction Grant. It also supported earthquake-complaint rebuilding and retrofitting of over 4,000 houses, and conducted geo-hazard surveys to support the safe relocation of those living in high landslide risk areas.

These interventions focused on building back better and helped identify ways to include vulnerable populations in the recovery and reconstruction process, reads the statement. “The UK will continue to work closely with the recently established National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Agency (NDRRMA) at the Ministry of Home Affairs. NDRRMA is a key government institution tasked with strengthening Nepal’s disaster risk reduction and management including preparedness and response.”

“I am very proud that the UK has been able to help so many people recover from the 2015 Earthquake. I am equally proud that we are continuing UK investments to help Nepal’s people cope and recover from future shocks even more effectively,” said Nicola Pollitt, British Ambassador to Nepal.

Disaster Risk Reduction is critical to protecting Nepal’s vulnerable populations. We very much appreciate the UK’s past support for the earthquake reconstruction and the additional support for this important agenda, said Anil Pokhrel, Chief Executive of the NDRRMA

The UK is also collaborating with Nepal’s development partners to help deliver increased support for Green, Resilience and Inclusive Development (GRID) in Nepal. This is expected to see an increase in support for Disaster Risk Reduction as well as to protect vulnerable communities from climatic and earthquake shocks.

To demonstrate its commitment to this agenda the UK is now in discussion with Nepal’s Ministry of Home Affairs (MOHA) to provide additional support to build resilience to future shocks, as part of the UK’s overall efforts to support Nepal’s Green, Resilient and Inclusive Development.

Continuing to invest in disaster preparedness and resilience will help ensure a safer future for Nepal. The UK is already investing £100 million in Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate adaptation to further build climate resilience in Nepal.