The number of casualties caused by the recent earthquake is expected to rise heavily, the greatest need of assistance is in the countryside.
The Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs has pledged 600.000 euros in assistance to Nepal via Finn Church Aid (FCA). The funds directed to Nepal by FCA now total almost one million euros.
Leaving for Nepal on Thursday, Humanitarian Adviser Johanna Tervo explains that initially FCA is providing vulnerable people with water, shelter and sanitary supplies.
”After the first phase, we’ll move on to cash transfers, so that people can acquire the things they most need by themselves, e.g. medicine. Re-opening the schools as soon as possible is also a priority, as continuing their studies is an important form of psycho-social support for children shocked by the earthquake”, says Tervo.
The relief work of Finn Church Aid and its’ partners has been going on in Kathmandu since the weekend. However, the greatest need is in the countryside, where the damage is yet to be fully assessed. The Nepalese government has estimated that the number of casualties will rise to 10.000–15.000 people, when e. g. the provinces of Gorkha and Sindhupalchok are reached. These areas, among other so far unreached areas, have been up to 80–90 per cent destroyed according to some estimates.
The Executive Director of Finn Church Aid, Antti Pentikäinen is very actively seeking the Finnish people’s support for the Nepalese affected by the earthquake.
“I appeal strongly for more aid funds; any contributions will make a real difference on the ground. The earthquake in Nepal is without any doubt the most severe natural catastrophe this year. It has been estimated that the gross domestic product of Nepal, already one of the poorest countries in the world, has already dropped by at least 20 per cent. The reconstruction will take up to 10–15 years according to some estimates, says Pentikäinen.
For more information:
Eija Alajarva, Head of Humanitarian Assistance, tel. +358 40 582 1183,
Rajeev K.C, Project Coordinator, tel. +358 400 934 946,
Eriikka Käyhkö, Communications Officer, tel. + 358 40 631 9732