Nepal Disaster Diary

 

Tuesday 28th April

Mawnan School has had a connection with Peace Garden School in Nepal for some years now. More recently we have set up a more established connection through the British Council and my twin brother’s school, Birkdale School in Sheffield. It was Birkdale School that raised the finances and set up the school in an area outside Kathmandu. Class 4 all wrote letters to individual children at the Peace Garden School just last term. Understandably we all wait to see what has happened to them and how they have faired in such a dreadful disaster. I now have some small news as to what has happened. Information is very second hand as there is no electricity in the area so no direct means of communication. At first we thought the school building had survived in tact but we now know that the upper floor has collapsed. As it was a Saturday no children were at school. This may not be good news as many houses/homes in the area have collapsed completely. We have not heard anything yet about the welfare of the children. The head teacher, Arjun, was at the school at the time and we have been told, indirectly, that he has survived but his own home where his family was has collapsed. We have had no news of his family at present. The area is in need of urgent help as you must have seen on the news. If you would like to support the school and children of the immediate area we would be happy to receive donations here at School. Please make any cheques payable to Mawnan School and include (Nepal Charity) written on the back. We hope to send the first cheque as soon as Thursday so please do donate.

Many thanks,

Randall Brook

Wednesday 29th April

The response has been fantastic- we already have received in the region of £500 in just one day from Parents and children- some giving pocket money, birthday money and holiday savings money.

The following email has been received today from an British friend living in Nepal who knows the school well and is involved in its management and up keep.

“Bit of a nightmare here at the moment.

I have just got back from walking around Bungamati…its awful I have taken lots of pictures which I will try to send to you when I have a chance. You will be shocked by what you will see.

I haven’t been able to get into Kokhana as its blocked just now.

The Peace Garden School is badly damaged. The structure looks fine until you get inside and look close. I am going to get an engineer to look it over and give me a professional assessment. There are cracks everywhere and it may need some major refurbishment.

Arjun (the headteacher) and his family, are living in a makeshift tent on the playground all three of them. Arjun wife burst into tears and just hugged Patti when we saw them.

She and daughter and mother in law were trapped under the rubble of Arjun’s house when it collapsed. I have a picture of the house which I will send soon. .its dreadful.

The Bungamati school was not affected ..lord know how as the buildings on the main street in front of it are terrible.

The main square in Bungamati where the big temple is has been demolished. We were there with a Polish fire and rescue team with their sniffer dogs looking people under the rubble..so sad. I will send pictures of that to you as the students will have been to that temple. The one by the Rato Machendranath.

I think it would be good for you to channel money through me and we can then discuss and target how to spend the money in a sensible and directed way.. People here are already worried about money being “mis-directed” and there is a rush to spend which always leads to huge waste.

So, I am happy for you work money through me and we can agree projects. Money is not needed right now but next week and the following weeks as things settle and the need really shows itself

Sorry not to be more specific but we are at 6s and 7s at the moment. We are without water and food is a bit short …thanks goodness the electricity has now been connected as we were in the dark for a few days.

This will have to do for now, but to recap, yes I am happy to act on your behalf. I am sure we can do far more than the big agencies.

Thursday 30th       Funds raised  to date £980  (in two days- Fantastic! Thank you so much.)

Email from Keith Brook from Birkdale School

Thank you all for your support and for sending in the funds.

We are already transferring money to Nepal and have started in just a small way to help as best we can through our contact out there. 

We have today bought 600 kilo’s of beaten rice which we are organising to send by truck to the remote areas where there isn’t any food or water etc. 

I have received a couple of e mails from Nepal this morning from Mike and Patti Lock. They have been to see Arjun at the Peace Garden School and have also been to the school at Bungamati. They have not had chance to go to the Noble School. We know that most children are OK but do not have much detail about individuals. The pictures that Mike refers to are on the school website- http://www.birkdaleschool.org.uk/news/news-senior-school/293-latest-from-nepal.html

When we were there this year we gave Arjun a large parachute (for parachute games) – you will see from the pictures that it came in useful for a while.

Here are the emails received today

Email 1

Dear Keith

By now you should have some of the pictures that we took yesterday in Bungamati..its just desperate.

Patti  managed to get a tent from a Polish aid worker whilst we were there and gave it to Arjun to supplement his “tent” She will send a picture ..

Arjuns wife just burst into tears when we went back with it.

 

We will have to wait until we see just where we can help. At the moment the aid agencies are helping but they are of course looking at the big picture, health, water, blankets etc on a large scale … we will try and help individual cases so that the money is well spent and in a really needed area.

I have to say we are a bit anxious and there is a lot of fear of course…the BBC has said there may be another quake on the way…lets hope they are wrong !!!

 Catch you later

Mike

E mail 2

The parachute was leaking badly as it was of course not weather proof..so the big tarpaulin really came in useful.. 

I can’t believe the amount of money you have raised we will do our very best to ensure that it goes to the right things and we will do our best to show you where it is spent

Here is Patti to say a few things

 

Hi Keith,     Arjun’s wife was in a dreadful state when we met her…..she  seemingly was pulled from the rubble from her house .   I felt so so so pleased I was able to get them something to keep the rain out.    The Machendranath temple is completely flattened ….the Polish aid was there with sniffer dogs but I came away before they pulled out the first body.  Its horrendous here …toilet facilities are dreadful and Kathmandu smells like ……well,… !  There is a truck going out to the badly hit areas tomorrow so we are  just about to go out to buy rice in abundance for them.   We are fine…..no meat and supplies are very low  but we have pasta….and we are safe.    We will chat agin soon……and will look after Arjun….love to both ..patti x

 

Friday 1st May

The appeal was in one of the local papers today and more money came in for the appeal- some from people who had nothing to do with the school.   We now have in the region of £1500 pounds in three days!   “Thank you everyone so much.”

School is now closed for three days – Spring Bank Holiday.

Saturday- Monday 4th May

An email from the headteacher of the Peace Garden School

Dear Randall

Thank you very much. We are safe . School  is ok.

Warm regardsArjun

Hi Keith

Phew, what a day.

Today we went to Kokhana  … There’ll be parts that you will recognise that have collapsed and other that are not so badly affected on the surface.. but most have horrendous cracks and are very unsafe.

We also went out to the Noble School. As it is single story is fine but there are cracks that we will be able to patch up. Sadly there around it is badly affected and we will send pictures that will make your heart break. One chap asked us if we could help as no one from the aid agencies or the govt has been to help them. The proper aid agencies who are good and trying hard are stopped for getting on the ground by the govt officialdom.. its so sad that these NGO’s have everything here to help but just can’t get it to the people.

Tomorrow we are going to try and buy lots of plastic buckets, for collecting water and washing in , we hope to fill them with soap for washing, disinfectant, the hand cleansing stuff personal hygiene things for the women and girls and other bits and bobs that are useful if you are living in a makeshift tent. it will also help in the fight against diseases etc . The best we can do at the moment 

We managed to get a mobile hospital into the PGS for a day. This was the Kanti children mobile hospital, well it was two docs a clerk and a 4 wheel drive but it was better than nothing.. see pictures

Poor Arjun is in bits his wife can’t stop crying.. can you blame them. I am going to talk to him in the next couple of days about opening the school again …but he can’t think straight just yet as you can imagine.

All the beaten rice we sent earlier got to the village near the epicentre and was distributed to families… no interference thank goodness.

I will try and update you again tomorrow 

 

Thanks for all you support everyone here appreciates it

 

Mike

 

Hi Keith

Just a quick one as we are getting some of the things together that I listed to you yesterday…We have added to our list Mozzie cream, Mozzie nets kip mat material adult nappies for the elderly.. there is very little sanitation so the old folks use these things… I didn’t realize this… it also will help to stop the spread of disease …I would never of thought of that one!!

So we are still at it.. Lots of aid still stuck at the airport and help up by the system… So at least Birkdale can feel that they responding  quicker that some of the big Guys!!! Well done to you guys. 

Hope this is helpful

Catch you later

Mike 

Hi Keith

Just a quick up date

Kokhana lost 800 houses. Some belong to my employees, one poor girl has lost her mother and daughter..its so desperate for them.

I am trying now to get the kids back to school so that they can concentrate on other things… we may have to help buy new school uniforms for them.

It does seem amazing that school uniforms are a bit of a priority but I suppose they are proud of their school and don’t want to be seen letting the school down…. how different from us!!!

 We hope to send out the individual stuff that I spoke of yesterday tomorrow morning… just having trouble getting buckets ..amazing.. most of the other stuff we think we have.

 Catch you

later

Mike

 

Hi Keith

Quick update for you.

You may not believe this but no aid at all has reached the area of the Noble School and the little villages are in a terrible state.

We are going there this morning with the things that I told you about yesterday. The bucket full of stuff etc. we are also going to give as many families as we can 3 kg of rice and 1 kg of Dahl.

We have bought this and we are going to make the small bags of it here in the factory and then we will go out and give it to the people in need.

You can be sure that Birkdale have done a great job and you money is going straight to the needy as you can see from the pictures. We have managed to get hold of 30 largish tents which we will give to the right people.

 

The poor big aid people are to a certain extent handcuffed by the government …we are at least able to do as we please and get immediate stuff to people. We are very small but everything helps and of course we can’t help everyone.

Thanks for helping everyone. People here do very much appreciate it.

Several of our workers have lost their homes and one poor lady has lost her dau8gfhter and mother..its all so sad.

I’ll keep you updated. Please thank all the students and their families for me please

 

Catch you later

 

Mike

 

 

From Patti,

 

We managed to get out and about more today and found more villages which have not seen aid yet…..so we gave them a ” help” pack…..then told aid people where they were.     Heard today that 80 houses in Khokana have been flattened and that’s not to mention just what damage has been done to the inside of buildings. Can’t believe this destruction took 50 seconds to do……It somehow doesn’t feel right coming back each night to our home, seemingly without damage and we now have electricity and water….and they have nothing…and have nothing for a long time. The photo of Patti with a young lady from the village… Patti says this “I love this photo…..what has she got to smile about?…but she did.  She lost her house and family I am told.   Notice the bamboo trying to hold up the houses.” Patti also comments on the man crouching who is from the leprosy colony. “This man is alone…notice his cooker behind him…he also has leprosy. But he is being looked after now” Love Patti

Wednesday 6th May 

A quick email to Arjun in the Peace Garden School who has managed to make contact- followed by his reply.
It is wonderful to hear from you. Best wishes to you for all you have to do.
 

Dear Randall

Thank you very much. I am very zeal to connect you soon for Brotish council course .
Warm Regards
Arun

Another email from Mike

Hi Keith

I have been to the school and it is obvious that the kids are traumatized and are scared to go back to school. So I am arranging to have a session of counselling by a local counsellor. I think this is important.

Also you and I will need to discuss getting the school up to speed… many of the parents won’t be able to afford the small fees or the uniforms that have been lost in the rubble.

The interesting stuff that we have been doing is now drawing to a close as the “big guns” are here and they have huge resources.. so the immediate aid that you guys helped with has to draw to a close and we need to think how to spend the rest of the money wisely… getting kids into school is important and we may have to subsidize a lot of them for the first 6 months or so… what do you think. We have money from you and the money that Greg and Gavin have collected.

If the kids are in school it takes their minds of living in a tent during the day. Also we can try and keep an eye on their general health… all the usual suspects like cholera, diarrhoea  typhoid and other bad things are on the horizon.

What do you think? You guys are the teachers and you know best. I am just the foot soldier under orders…

Catch you later

Mike

 Pictures

Finances so far.

Dear all

First Stage: Just so you can see how the funds are being spent so far.. The cost  of rice and the 4 wheel drive vehicle he hired to go out to teh epicentre at short notice, plus the 100 buckets distributed to the villages in the area round Bungamati and Khokana are listed below.

Thank you all for the wonderful response to this emergency. We have raised over £15000 so have sent more money out for the next stage – getting the children into school

Hi Keith

In regard to costings:

So far

2000 KGS  beaten rice    200Kgs rice  100 kgs Dahl  Hire of vehicle/ petrol etc.                                    £1700 

The buckets that included the items below below:  £12 each                                                                  £1200

  • Bucket
  • Mozzie net
  • Mozzie repelant
  • Bar of soap
  • Bottle Dettol
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Female hygene products
  • the rice and dahl (left over from above) i.e.  2kgs ric .5 kgs dahl  cost above

 Cash dispensed to the needy that really need some money for local  food and water etc                                 £1347

 Tarpaulins   100   £8 each                                                                                                                                   £800Total £5047

 Tomorrow we will be taking another 200Kgs We haven’t paid for that yet  of rice to a village up by Daxankali but 2 miles of the road..should be fun!!!!!! I will need my walking boots that’s for sure.

 I hope this helps Keith, Don’t worry about the accounting thing I know people are afraid of being done and I don’t blame them…if you were here you would be shocked by the stupid things that are going on and the waste.

 

I hope this is helpful

 

Catch you later

Mike

Friday 8th May

Dear all,

Latest e mail from Mike received this morning.

E mail 6

Hi Keith,

Yesterday went well; we travelled by Jeep for about 2 hours into the country to an area that had not received any help. We took 200kgs of rice and 50kgs of dahl to help 25 families in a very small village

The locals had to walk for three hours to meet us. I will send you a picture of where the village is… you will need a magnifying glass to see it …it is so far away from the road.

Most of the people coming to carry the sacks back to the village were young women. They walked for 3 hours to get to us and then 3 hours back to their village with a 20 Kg load on the their head and shoulders.

 We also have provided 50 tarpaulins to local people here in Kokhana and Bungamati .. to help cover their makeshift tents. It has been raining hard here so we were just in time with the tarpaulins!!! Having said that we are only able to help people at the tip of the iceberg.

 Your help for them is huge so thank you to you at Birkdale.

 We are now going to stop the immediate aid unless we are have special cases as the “big boys” are in town and they should be doing good work by now.

 Our plan for your money is to look at the schools and see what’s needed overall to get the kids back to school etc.

 We are also hoping to help people re build in the following way…We are trying to get them (Arjun included) to save as many bricks from their collapsed houses as possible.. We will then later on provide them with sacks of cements etc. to help them to rebuild their houses. We don’t want to give cash as they will squander it on other things I suspect. Sounds hard but I know what people are like. If we provide the sand and cement etc. they will get on with re building… It will only be in a small way but at least your money will go on real items for building as opposed to being wasted on non-essentials ( sounds pompous but its all a worry here that things are wasted)

 Are you happy with this, If you have other ideas for your money let me know and I will channel it in that way… its your money after all not mine and I am very much aware that I am just spending your money on my ideas not yours.

 I have to say that fatigue is beginning to set in and everyone here in the office is suffering from tiredness.. I has surprised me that I am tired also!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 I will send pictures later, I am trying to run the biz and do the aid stuff at the same time… just a bit challenging!!!!

 Catch you later

Mike

We have told Mike that this is fine and once again told him we agree wholeheartedly with his decision making. I for one trust Mike fully as he understands the situation, he is in the area and over the years that we have being doing this work in Nepal together his judgement has been superb. I have also told him that he must make sure his health does not suffer – that he and Patti must get proper rest. After-all their health must come first otherwise they will be useless to everyone

Thank you once again for your support and prayers for those in Nepal

Keith

Monday 11th May

Received this from Milan yesterday. Milan and Shusma run the Annandit Church and Children’s home. They look after the 9 orphaned children that Birkdale support.
Tuesday 12th May   ANOTHER EARTH QUAKE!

Email From Mike

Hi Keith

We are fine.. Bit scary though

We will now have to recheck the schools again!,, The big worry is that buildings that are badly cracked from the previous Shake will have collapsed .

Everyone will be sleeping outside again. I may have to buy more tarpaulins for people. It’s all so sad At least Patti is in Oz …which means I can give a bit more time to people.

I am sorry to ask but if you could send some money as I am just not sure if there will be more emergency stuff

Catch you later as I must dash 

Thanks again for your mail 

 

Mike

Hi Everyone,

We are a bit back to square one; the things we have done with your

money have been a great help, especially now with this second

large quake. Lots of the houses in Bungamati and in Kokhana that

were cracked but standing and “may or may not” have been OK to live

in downstairs or at least to cook in, have now collapsed

completely so the new batch of tarpaulins came in very useful .

Although they don’t know it, the locals have benefited from you

and your school. The help is of course only a fraction but at

least you and your students  can look each other in

the eye and know that they have really helped some people.

In regard to the school … you won’t believe this. We had set up a

counselling session for the young students to give them some help

and convince them that it was fine and safe to come back to

school. They had a walk-through of the classrooms and then they

were all seated on the floor inside a tent that was made up from

the parachute, that you brought over at Easter, when the

earthquake stuck again. There was a great deal of fear but no

panic…lots of crying and tears as you can imagine. It was just

terrifying for the kids and for the teachers.. poor Arjun

(Headmaster) was in bits.. I will send a picture of the Parachute

tent, empty of course, just to let you see it and so you can

describe the scene to your people. ..How frightening!!!

I have been over things with Arjun about the school and how we get

it back and up and running. He has lost most of his students for

the foreseeable future as lots have left the valley to go back

to their family villages. At the last count he had about 100 kids

who were prepared to come back, or at least until yesterday’s

quake.

He is going to find it very difficult until the memory fades and

the kids start coming back properly.

I have asked for a list of kids who have lost everything. The

reason for this is that we may have to think about providing them

with books and in some cases new uniforms (you understand the need

for uniforms here) although that can wait bit. I suspect that he

won’t have enough money to pay the teachers .. he needs to keep

them of course, so, we may have to pay their salaries for perhaps

2 months until things start to get back to what can be called

normal. I will get the figures and we can discuss the way forward.

I feel it is so important to get the kids back to school in Peace

Garden School.

 

Sadly it’s a bit of a mess here…. and I also fall into that

category .. Fingers crossed that it will all be OK . I will keep

you up dated.. have a think about the Peace Garden School and advise me

on what you think I should do. As I have said earlier it’s your

school’s money and I worry about that. If you are in the decision

making process it’s good for you and the school.

I am “burbling” …. nerves I expect!!!!!

Catch you later, Mike.

May 26 (from Mike Lock)

Dear Keith

Forgive me for the rash of mails..I just feel that I need to keep you

and others up to date..especially as it is not newsworthy in UK now!!

Today I went to inspect the PGS.. The govt and the engineer have

told Arjun that they are not to use the upstairs. We are still getting

aftershocks which would be considered earthquakes elsewhere. So we

are planning to erect six classrooms on some spare land at the back of

the school… The temporary classrooms will be made of “wriggly tin”

corrugated  sheeting… We are costing it out to get it sorted as soon as

possible.

The Children start school again on Sunday, May 31st, and we need

to act fast so I am going ahead with it as soon as I can get the “iron

man” to start work.  I am hoping for an estimate from our man in the next

couple of days. It is course so important to get the kids back to the

classroom as they ate all wondering around here and of course they

have to do school and SLC exams.

I know that my plans that I descried to you seem to be all over the

place..but its hard to “see the wood for the trees” at times and as no one

ever tells anyone anything until the last moment here planning is

difficult. So you can tell everyone that we are on track. The current plan

is:

Helping the leprosy colony with food and other items . We will  be giving

to each individual  so that the “authorities” don’t get their hands on

anything  (it’s a problem here) so it will be door to door and handing to

individuals..not an easy job!!!

PGS project ..Payment for teachers, payment for books etc for the

children who have lost everything.  Plus the new classrooms in

corrugated iron as a temporary measure.

Bikash’s building.. We are getting our engineer to go and look at his

building and work out what to do and the cost.

I will send some pictures. I hope that this “Fuddled” update is fine for

you to use.  Unfortunately I am trying to think on my feet.

Catch you later,

Mike

May 26 (from Ashtok, Leprosy Colony / Church)

Dear Keith,

Now I am in Kathmandu and spending less time in the office. Most of

the time I am spending in the field working for the earthquake victims.

Thank you so much for the support that you sent via Mike. Today I am

going to meet Bikash.

May 26 (from Milan, Orphanage)

Hello Keith

Thank you so much for your continue prayers for us. Today I have

received 1100 from Mike for Bhardev. Many thanks for the same.

Earthquake news:

So far death toll 9,000, Injured 21,000, Missing a few hundred.

Around 800,000 houses need rebuilding. Hundreds of schools

collapsed and thousands of children have no building to go to School.

Today Pastor Indra and Sushila gone to Dolakaha where 2nd

earthquake hit. They going with a full vehicle with zinc tin roof to give to

schools and to people but some people tried to looted it and now it is all

gone to Police post and police are sorting them out. Hopefully they can

distribute it tomorrow and will come back, please pray for them.

Yesterday I went to Sindhuli district where we could

distribute around 36 solar lights. Also we went with package food for

120 people in Rasuwa. Tomorrow going to Sindhu with more zinc tin

roof. Your prayers will be highly appreciated !!! God bless,

Milan.

May 29 (Mike Lock)

Hi Keith

I know that I seem to be bombarding you with mails just now.

Today we went to the leprosy colony and

distributed the goods that I told you about in the

mail yesterday. It went very well and I am sure

you would have been pleased. I also managed to

get one or two pieces of video which I will send.

One of them is the kids saying thank you to you at

Birkdale and Mawnan School..but it’s not all that clear to me!!! The

cost was about £1800  which is not bad as we

gave to everyone registered at the colony, 250

souls. The pictures will tell the tale and I am

sure will be a good addition to your next

update.  Everyone in the office participated,

what a good lot they are…  I suspect you

would have been in tears if you were there

today… Lots of the lepers came to me and

said, “Thank you Birkdale and Mawnan!”

We took our builder and the steel man (

the man who does wriggly tin etc) to review

Bikash’s building at the Leprosy Colony. The

builder informed us that he would be able to

Retro fit it and make it safe.

Have a nice weekend

Mike

June 1st (from Mike Lock)

Hi Keith,

Now that we are in the post earthquake period we need to be careful as the

people who suffer here are the ones at the bottom and who have little influence

or resources to help themselves. You know how it works here!!! I am on the

case and will do my best to ensure

that your money is used in the right

places and for the right people.

We have started making the

temporary classrooms for the PGS

yesterday….This is the right sort of

thing to do in my opinion.

Tashi and I will be able to go and

see the Noble School today …at

last..The road has been blocked but is

now clear..They may have a bit of

repair to do ..I will keep you

informed..

You most definitely would have had  a tear in

your eye at the leprosy distribution. It was what

they wanted not what the foreigners thought they

should have ( who would have thought of

bournevita!!!)  and lots of people were saying

“Thank  you Birkdale and Mawnan” out loud …I mean it and I

am not making it up…you would have been

proud of yourself.

Catch you later,

Mike

 

May 31st (Bikash, former PGS student, runs small school at Leprosy Colony)

Hello sir, from today May 31st, we have started tutoring kids under the

tarpaulin. Almost 35 students were present today in our tutoring center.

Hopefully the number of kids will increase from tomorrow. We are giving the

counselling to the kids and allowing them to draw pictures, sing, play games

and involved in creative things. Here is a picture.

June 2nd (Milan and Shusma … Orphanage)

Dear  School family,

We are so pleased and deeply touched by the way you have shown your love

and concern as well as invested your prayers for this nation/for us in this tragic

times. Please accept our sincere thanks and deep gratitude for the same. We

also have received a list of the people and their amount sent via Bank and Ichthus.

We have seen names on the list but we don’t know some of them personally.

God bless,

Milan and Shusma Adhikari

Thankyou’s from Arjun and the children.

9th June

The monsoons are expected imminently, but they seem to be two weeks late.  This is a great relief as the work to produce temporary buildings at the schools is a race against time.  Children were back at school ten days or so ago.

PGS photos June 7 – 9

22nd NovemberDear all,

I have received some more e mails from Nepal and have copied them below with comments.

 

The first two are from Arjun (Head Master of the Peace Garden School)

Dear Keith

Namaste and Good morning

 

It is cold here now. The small children are very cold in the temporary classroom because the ground floor is wet and damp. Very unfortunately , some children are affected by cold fever. So students are irregular in their nowadays. Should i get any kind solutions, please?

Arjun

 

Here was my reply followed by his second e mail.

So sorry to hear this Arjun.

 

I have no easy solution for you. We cannot improve the weather or the blockade although we are writing to our prime minister to see if the British can put some pressure on the Indian Government to help lift the blockade. When Mike gets back I will ask him to come down to the school and have a look. Perhaps we can put some carpet down for them to sit on.

 

All the best

 

Keith

 

Dear Keith

Namaste and Good Morning

 

Very happy to listen your kind concern for entire Nepal and Nepali. Do hope sooner or later this blockade will come to an end. I think sooner is better. It must. It is unfair, illegal and non-humanitarian. This Indian blockade added more pain for earthquake affected Nepalese. Of more immediate humanitarian concern is lacking of basic needs viz. food materials, cooking gas in the kitchen, medicine in the hospitals. And juvenile children are deprived of getting education.

People are sheltering in their just temporary shelters, they cannot rebuild before a harsh Himalayan winter. How miserable life we are enjoying. Thank you very much as you are writing to your PM for better Nepal and its people.

You are extremely right Keith. If we can manage warm carpets, it works nice. We trust in our toil and hard endeavour. We are doing and making good children in the school.

Warm Regs

Sincerely yours

Arjun and school family

 

 

 

Here is Mike’s e mail – He has been in the UK recently and took back with him lots of letters from my brother’s school in Cornwall. (Gavin and Greg are his two sons and they live in the UK).

I have read some articles that say that the Nepalese in the South of the country (the Terai) are also to blame for the blockade of Nepal and asked Mike who he thought was mainly to blame…..

Hi Keith,

Arjun is delighted with the letters that he has received from your brother’s school.. He will distribute them to the relevant children and when they answer he will give the letters to me and I will send them over via Greg and Gavin on one of our shipments.

 

I have been to look at the situation in regard to the temporary classrooms and the issue of them being cold. We won’t be able to do much in regard to heating as the classrooms are made “wriggly tin” but we can do something to help them underfoot.

 

I intend, if you agree, to buy a type of foam underlay and then some of the “Belgium  carpet”  ( as they call it)  it’s the same thin carpet that you have seen in the main school block where the children sit on the floor.

We need to sort 4 classrooms. The little ones take their shoes off and the cold from the concrete floor is not good for them.

Are you OK with this…..

 

The situation here is not good,. The blockade is still going on and the poor people are suffering the most. Most Nepalese are cooking on open fires in their gardens or open spaces. Very little gas in cylinders is getting through and when it does the price is sky high… the same for petrol and diesel. Medical supplies are running short and of course the government are not good and are not doing very much to resolve the situation.

Having said that the Indians are being very unfair by blocking the perishable food stuffs and medicines.

The people are hardy and are managing by all sorts of ingenious ways. The sad thing is that there is now a growing shortage of wood to supply the cooking fires.

 

Nothing yet has been done in regard to the re construction after the earthquake. The Political parties are still squabbling over who should head the re construction committee. Its maddening. Its all about who gets their hand on the money!!!!! Good job you guys did not send the money to the “official” fund raising site as it would have been completely wasted.

 

Arjun is still living in a classroom with his family as he can’t do anything in regard to his house  and of course he has not received any official help along with the rest of his community.

 

It is considered that this will go on for another 2 months at least until the country is brought to its knees economically  and then they will give in to the “unofficial” demands for a constitution change that the Indians wish. I have to say that there is fault on both sides. 

The articles you have read are right in some ways.. The constitution didn’t do as much for the Madeshis..( Terri  people) as they should have done and of course they will have to rectify that….. but the Indians who are ethnically the same as the Terri people are using it as an excuse for intimidation… there is a lot more to it as there always is. It is mainly the water recourse that is at stake for India…. perhaps the guardian didn’t make that connection. whatever way you look at it.. Nepal is a sovereign country and should sort their own inter political problems out themselves…. India is being “big brother” and stirring the pot… very naughty indeed and to some extent it is a bit like the school bully.

 

Oh yes I forgot to tell you….. The PGS organized a mobile clinic for Mothers and children last weekend. I will send some pictures. On Monday I am hoping to line up the children who had their eyes tested and had new glasses and send that to you also.

 

Just think, whilst we are putting our oversized Turkey’s in the oven for Christmas lunch… lots of your friends here will be trying to cook their dhal baht on an open fire and will trying to keep warm…. We are so lucky …..

 

I am sure it will sort itself out once they are able to force the prime minister to resign and have a more Indian centric PM in his place!

 

Catch you later and have a nice weekend

Love to Gillian

Mike

I have told Mike to go ahead with the classroom floor upgrade and that we look forward to receiving the photos

Thank you all for your interest and support and to those who sent letters to MPs and the PM and also for the funds that are still coming in.

 

Keith

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