Nepal’s Earthquakes Yesterday’s Biz To Us, Chhiri ‘s Current Reality

Lauren Hodge
Lauren Hodge

The Nepal Earthquake is yesterday’s business for most western news stations, but for local Nepalese trekking guide, Chhiri Rai, and his family it is todays reality as they cope with the hectic situation in Nepal. Daily aftershocks, a destroyed house, sleeping in make-shift tents and lack of supplies for his family who are stranded in his remote village are some of the serious issues he and a lot of remote Nepalese people face in the aftermath of this disaster.

Chhiri was my trekking guide when I was in Nepal 4 months ago and I keep close contact with him. He and his family are from a village called Gudel, situated high in the eastern Himalayan Mountains that is not receiving aid. This is not an isolated situation due to their extremely remote location

I spoke with Chhiri Friday on the phone when he was experiencing a 4.9 magnitude aftershock from the Nepal Earthquake. He described the situation in Kathmandu as people were running from inside cracked buildings to safety outside in open areas. The first earthquake left buildings still standing making the buildings look safe, but it created serious cracks down the side of the builds that can cause them to crumble during an aftershock or a tremor. Chhiri and I were cut out a few times on the phone, but he was able to speak about what they were experiencing in Kathmandu and his village (picture of where they are taking shelter in Kathmandu and also a picture of his village).

The aftershock he was experiencing at that moment was from the 2nd earthquake (7.3 Magnitude) that hit Nepal last Tuesday. It was much closer to Chhiri’s remote village compared to the first earthquake and has done more damage to the remote mountain villages. If you haven’t heard, the first earthquake was 7.8 magnitude and hit Nepal on April 25th killing over 8,000 and injuring over 19,000 people.

Aid organisations (Red Cross, Oxfam, UNICEF, AmeriCares) are trying their hardest to provide aid to the areas with most causalities and injuries which are in towns, central areas and rural areas. However, this leaves the extremely remote Sherpa villages high in the mountains without aid before the Monsoon season and probably without aid ever. The lack of aid and supplies is mainly due to the fact that extremely remote villages are very difficult and dangerous to get to. Even dropping supplies using a helicopter is too dangerous. Some of these extremely remote villages have been completely flattened and decimated.

For this reason, splitting donations between aid organisations and local Nepali people living in extremely remote areas is advice I read and agree with. That way the money is in the hands of the people who will use it the right way. The aid that Chhiri’s village is receiving is being generated from the help of those villagers that live there by providing a helping hand to build make-shift tents. Nepalese people are the kindest most gentle people so I am absolutely not surprised that they are coming together to help each other through this hard time.

For more information on Chhiri’s story or to donate directly to help the kindest most gentle family rebuild their home in a remote Nepali village go to http://www.gofundme.com/chhiri

Travel advice from a local travel company in Nepal. 

If you are considering travelling to Nepal. Please do. Jobs are key to a secure future for anyone in the world. Ethical travel is key to jobs in Nepal.

Himalayan Trails Ltd is the agency who provided the specific advice on travel Himalayan Nepal Treks P. Itd.  provided advice on to ‘certainly travel to Nepal.

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