‘Home in the box’ for Nepal’s ravaged families
This is perhaps exactly the mental condition of those who have seen and experienced the recent devastating earthquake that shook Nepal on April 25 this year. Even so, for children who have been exposed to such irreparable loss.
To come out with notions of help in such conditions may be a noble idea but actually to be at Ground Zero and be a part of the entire operation, overcoming pile-up of rubble and pulling out dead bodies, may require a lot of courage and grit. The situation becomes all the more difficult when children need assistance — urgently.
SOS Children’s Village — an organisation functioning in Nepal for over 40 years now — was the first to come to their aid, helping them pick up the pieces and that too within a span of three hours. Their response was prompt and shelters were erected where the victims could live and get medical assistance and food. After the basic needs were looked into, process to take care of the children,
which is the main function of the organisation, began.
Children Care Spaces were created where kids were given basic amenities like food and clothing. These spaces are day-care centres for those whose parents leave their kids behind in the morning in order to find a living and after the day’s work come and fetch their children back.
Initially, just after the quakes, about 22 such children care spaces were opened but gradually the need diminished as the process of rehabilitation had benefitted many children. Presently, there are 14 such spaces still functioning in Nepal.
In an exclusive interview to Millennium Post, Siddhartha Kaul, the Global President of SOS Children’s Villages said the organisation has come up with an innovative idea of rehabilitating the victims. Each family is provided with a “Home in the box” which is a kit, costing the organisation around 40,000 Nepalese Rupees each, containing basic amenities such as pots and pans, bed sheets, mattresses, clothes and other essentials.
After the quakes literally destroyed the country, the government of Nepal asked SOS Children’s Village to concentrate on education and reconstruction mainly. The organisation has taken charge of re-building four schools.
However, there can be no achievements without obstacles. The major hindrances that they faced while conducting the aid were adverse environmental conditions, power failures and the backwardness of the country in terms of technology.
Elaborating on the steps that were taken to rehabilitate or bring the children to <g data-gr-id="58">mainstream</g> who had become orphans, Kaul said: “We would find them families who would be ready to adopt them.” He also added that the organisation has several projects for all kids that will prove prudent in developing the skills of a child, which in turn will make him/her independent in life.
The organisation’s basic target in Nepal is to educate at least one member of a family who can look after the entire unit in the long run.
Siddhartha Kaul has been a part of the organisation since a tender age of 10 years and says that challenges and obstructions are “a part of the game”.
He further said that he has faced a lot of difficulties but nothing has been able to stop him from pursuing his dreams. In India, he is fondly called <g data-gr-id="46">bhaiya</g> (big brother) and he says that the name is more of an endearment rather than respect.
Relief work in Nepal is still continuing and the organisation believes it can help the people substantially to recuperate and also aims to complete reconstruction within three years.