On 25 April 2015, a major earthquake measuring 7.8 on the Richter scale hit Nepal just outside the capital city, Kathmandu. A second earthquake measuring 7.3 hit just two weeks later. This caused widespread damage across several districts, the worst hit being Sindhupalchowk where 95% of schools were damaged or destroyed. Children have been learning in temporary learning shelters but long-term rebuilding is much needed to ensure their education and wellbeing is not disrupted any longer.
In September 2016, Study Group began raising £220,000 for construction and fit out of a new school in Sindhupalchowk District, Nepal.
Over the next 18 months, staff raised funds through payroll giving and by participating in events such as cake sales, running events, and an IT raffle. In December 2017, we raised significant funds through the inaugural Global Exercise Bike Challenge for our teams all over the world. The highlights of that event can be seen on a short video here.
The new Shinhamati School is now fully funded, and groundwork has begun.
- Rebuilding classrooms and ECCD rooms with quality durable and resilient materials.
- Equipping all classrooms with child-friendly desks and chairs.
- Ensuring schools are accessible for people with disabilities.
- Constructing accessible, gender-separated toilet blocks.
- Installing drinking water points.
- Constructing boundary walls to protect the environment from strong winds and rain, and to increase the safety of children attending.
- Investing in disaster preparedness training, including providing first aid kits and search and rescue kits.
- Improving the knowledge of children, teachers, parents and community members on what to do in an emergency and how to stay safe.
- Raising awareness on the importance of girls' education and gender equality in the classroom and at home.
- Improving temporary learning centres while children prepare to transition from these to the new school.
- Working with the local and national government to improve disaster preparedness in the long-term within communities and schools.
Building just one school will benefit hundreds of students learning in temporary classrooms or not attending school at all. New schools in Nepal are being rebuilt to withstand future disasters, and the involvement of local communities is intrinsic to these reconstruction projects.
Building Back Better
Building Back Better means that community recovery efforts result in safer, more resilient buildings and infrastructure.
It means working with communities on their recovery journey, involving them as partners in the entire process, providing emotional support and building knowledge, community spirit and resilience. Things that aren't seen immediately, but that can withstand any future challenge.