Aid Where it’s Needed Most
Just this past Sunday (May 31) two team members traveled with some representatives from a local church and organization called Nepal Christian Children Education Fellowship into a hard-hit district east of Kathmandu. Through the church they heard from a local believer in this district, Sindhupalchok, that there was a village that needed aid. We put together 1710kg of rice and corresponding oil and salt packages, as well as warm blankets, and distributed them to 58 families in this village. It took the team a total of about 11 hours to drive there and back, a distance that only covers about 160km. This is partly due to roads being damaged by the earthquakes and subsequent landslides, but mostly the road is unpaved and even with a 4-wheel drive vehicle is slow to maneuver.
The village was located on the top of a steep hill, about 1900m high, and the majority of the homes were destroyed by the earthquake. Some families had already begun building new temporary shelters using bamboo and tin or tarpaulin. But since they are mostly small-scale farmers, and they lost much of their seed and farming supplies due to the earthquake or the rains that followed, they needed help with basic food supplies. For these families, receiving a gift of basic food supplies was such a blessing. The closest city to buy food is a several hour walk away, and they don’t have the cash to be able to afford supplies anyways. “Thank you for coming to this remote place,” one woman shared. “I don’t know what we would have done if you hadn’t come.” She was not a Christian, but expressed an interest in attending the local church after hearing that these were all Christians who were helping her family.
The trip was a good example of the partnership that OM Nepal desires to have with local churches and other organizations. While we want to use our resources well, we also want to help empower Nepalese to take ownership over helping their own countrymen. The local believer used an avenue of calling the church pastor, who works with NCCEF and has partnered with OM Nepal. And while OM Nepal provided the funding for the supplies, NCCEF organized and paid for the truck to make the delivery, and the local Christian surveyed the village to ascertain the needs of the community and had a list of every family who was in need. When the team arrived with the supplies, the villagers gathered together and waited until their name was called from the list. Then they joyfully stepped forward and received the gift that would feed a family of 5 adults for about 15 days. It was such a smooth example of how ministry can be done well together.
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