After more than 35 years in Nepal, World Education’s community-based approach and strong relationships with local partners enabled us to respond quickly to meet the needs of communities severely impacted by the earthquakes of 2015.
In April and May of 2015, Nepal was struck by two major earthquakes that devastated huge segments of the country. More than 8,700 people were killed and more than 22,493 people were injured, affecting 35 of Nepal’s 75 districts.
World Education in Nepal
World Education has worked in Nepal since 1979 on projects that include designing educational innovations in preventing child labor and human trafficking, improving the quality of education in schools, peacebuilding, strengthening microfinance and livelihoods, and establishing sustainable agriculture. World Education also works closely with the Nepal Ministry of Education on the development of the national nonformal education program and the national literacy campaign.
All World Education programs in Nepal take a holistic approach to addressing the diverse and complex needs of children and youth. By connecting lessons in school with essential skills for employment, World Education creates training programs and materials that equip young people with meaningful skills that reflect their social, cultural, and economic realities.
Helping Communities in Need
Since the devastating earthquake in April and May, World Education’s work in Nepal has expanded to include providing immediate relief to heavily-impacted districts, while still meeting the needs of current project beneficiaries. Because of our long experience in the country, World Education was invited to serve on the United Nation’s Education Cluster Response Team to assess damage and develop a long-term rehabilitation plan for schools in Nepal.
Creating Spaces for Families to Cope
Immediately after the first earthquake, World Education set up temporary facilities called Child-Friendly Spaces in earthquake-affected areas to provide children with an area to learn, play, and most importantly, feel safe.
The Child-Friendly Spaces provided room for children to be active and continue learning before schools could reopen and Temporary Learning Centers were established, in addition to providing resources and support for children to cope and express their grief. Above, children learn a new dance and a young girl stands by a poster she made about the impacts of the earthquake.
Getting Children Back in School
>World Education also established more than 472 Temporary Learning Centers (TLCs) with WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) facilities throughout four districts so that children can continue their education until schools can be permanently rebuilt, and has distributed thousands of education kits including supplies, books,and games for classrooms across the country.
Investing in the Future of Nepal
The aftermath of the earthquake is particularly dangerous for girls and women, as many human traffickers see the disaster as an opportunity to recruit them (as well as men and boys) into unsafe and exploited labor.
To combat this, World Education will continue its support sustainable livelihoods development in the communities that are most at-risk for human trafficking. Through supporting Women’s Savings and Credit Groups in Nuwakot district, a source district for many of the girls and women trafficked into the sex industry in Kathmandu and in India, in addition to providing livelihoods development training for women throughout Nuwakot, Sindupalanchowk, and Kavre districts, World Education continues to stand with and strengthen Nepali communities against trafficking and exploitative labor.
The news headlines about the earthquakes in Nepal may have diminished, but World Education’s commitment has not. World Education and our partners remain dedicated to strengthening education opportunities and sustainable economic development in Nepal.