Our team on the ground in Nepal continues to call us every few days, or as they are able, to give updates of the situation there two weeks post-earthquake.
Here's a recap of what has happened and a few updates ...
One team member shared with us that his group had departed for Nepal so quickly that he had only taken two pair of pants and two shirts ... and no food with him. They arrived in Nepal less than 60 hours after the earthquake. Because there was no hotel space available at that time, they spent the first few days in a tent.
Three days after the earthquake, a large amount of food was purchased (several ton) and a feeding program was started. They have been feeding about 3,000 people a day. They are also distributing food for others to cook.
One of the churches, in a very rural area about 5 hours from Kathmandu, was destroyed and seven members were killed as they were having church service. More than 2,500 people were killed in that area. The team is sending three ton of food a day to that town to be distributed.
We were told that one of the reasons so many buildings collapsed is because they were built from brick and mud, no cement was used between the bricks. A huge challenge for the country is the fact that they have not experienced a disaster of this magnitude in more than 80 years, so they are not experienced in how to respond. That's why we are so blessed to have Philip and his team on the ground there. Several of that team have a lot of experience in responding to disasters. The team has now divided into three groups so they can work in more areas.
To date, 8 of the 18 pastors, who are ECC workers, have been located. One team member visited a hospital where one pastor’s wife had both of her legs amputated, and, they have not yet found the pastor/husband.
More than 35,000 meals had been provided as of earlier this week. Shelter is a pressing need. The overall needs now and in the future are enormous, but it also may well be one of the greatest opportunities our team has had to not only help people physically but also spiritually. Because of so much trauma, there is a need to train and send in people to do counseling, which will provide an opportunity to provide hope that only Christ can give. The spiritual needs of the Nepali people are certainly a priority as the team is praying with the victims. Please continue to pray for the people of Nepal. And pray, too, for our team on the ground--that the Lord would sustain their energy and strength.
If you'd like to donate to Nepal, please give here.