Supporting Flood Affected Communities in Nepal
South Asia is experiencing the worst monsoon in decades with record high rainfall recorded in parts of Northern India, Bangladesh and Nepal. Over 24 million people have been affected throughout the region and 1200 deaths have been reported, with several still missing. In Nepal, severe flooding has affected 35 out of the 75 districts, with the six worst hit districts — Saptari, Siraha, Mahottari, Rautahat, Banke and Bardiya- all lying in the Southern plains of Terai.
Ministry of Agricultural Development (MoAD) has reported that crops worth tens of millions of dollars have been destroyed, nearly 70,000 livestock lost, while over 500 industries remain shut in the aftermath of the flooding.
ICCO Cooperation and Kerk in Actie (KiA), along with their local partner, CCDN, mobilized a relief operation in Rautahat district of Nepal, where more than 48,452 households have been affected by the flooding and displaced 16,145 families leaving them in need of urgent emergency assistance. In coordination with the District Disaster Relief Committee (DDRC), Armed Police and local authorities, a relief distribution plan was devised targeting 600 of the most vulnerable households in Gaur and Saruatha, Rautahat.
“The flood washed away our belongings. Not that we had too many things to begin with. My husband is no more, so it is my responsibility to feed my children and keep a roof over their head. I could not give them a full meal in the last five days. Now that I have received the relief package, my burden has been halved. I can be sure that, at least for the next month, my children will eat well again” says Shamsu Khatun.
As floodwater recedes, majority of people temporarily displaced by the flooding have returned to their communities but according to the Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA), 20,888 families still remain temporarily displaced. Food security and nutrition is a major challenge foreseen in the coming days, as the flooding has caused NRP 8.11 billion worth of losses to the agricultural sector with crops under cultivation, stored grains and fisheries all sustaining damages according the Ministry of Agricultural Development. While the Parliament’s Agriculture and Water Resources Committee revealed the data on damage of irrigation amounts to Rs 2.42 billion.
ICCO is now assessing the longer term needs of the community in Rautahat for livelihoods and economic recovery.
Photo credit: Ranjit Shrestha/ICCO Cooperation