We wish to thank everyone who has contacted us with their best wishes of encouragements and donations for our very brave friends in Nepal.
Nepal seems to have disappeared form the News making many people think that the crisis is now over.
Well, it is not.
Life in Nepal is completely chaotic and people live in fear.
Earthquakes around 4 points still come up several times a day almost every day but, after the second very powerful one nobody was expecting, people are traumatised, especially the children.
As another quake of between 8 and 9 points is predicted any time now by world scientists, friends l manage to speak to tell me that it feels like the end of the world to them.
"Life means nothing anymore, the future is dark and there is nowhere for us to go to. We just wait in fear." said Kedar Timilsina, my God son.
More houses are crumbling every day.
Those which had been surveyed by government teams and graded as habitable are now re-evaluated as dangerous and uninhabitable.
Thank goodness most of our friend's livestock is safe.
At present this is most important as many depend on milk and eggs for the family's survival.
Although the international response has been prompt and doing its best in lieu of the difficult circumstances, many remote villages are still not getting the help advertised apart from getting a few tents dropped from helicopters.
Again right now the UN is asking for more help for Nepal.
News of corruption abound, no surprise there and you have to laugh... well, my Nepalese friends do.
A member of parliament has been arrested for having, in his private compound, 400 out of a lot of 600 tents and survival kits donated by charities. The 200 had already been sold.
India had its fingers slapped for sniffing at the Chinese border by helicopters despite having strictly being told by Nepalese officials to keep out from sensitive areas and concentrate on the centre and south of the country... The Chinese are mad about it !
Rumour in Nepal is that the American helicopter that crashed a few days ago killing the whole crew should not have been flying so close to the Chinese border either.
Ten days ago a stressed Nepal Government minister went in front of world cameras stating that "the government will not be charging the usual 220% import tax for goods coming in from charities...." Oh wooo, thanks ! What a gift to itself !....
You just have to work out how much has been spent over the years just on the land cruisers that create traffic jams at 6pm in Kathmandu driving the foreigners across the river to their residences near Lalitpur.
The Silver Lining, as there is always one - contraband is rife.
NCell, the equivalent to Orange in Nepal, was caught receiving a vast load of expensive mobile phones and spare parts from Chinese manufacturers packed inside Red Cross boxes.
The director was arrested but eventually the Chinese bailed him out by saying that it was their mistake because, in the panic, they used the Red Cross boxes that were lying around instead of the usual packaging.
The Red Cross is furious and of course denies having anything to do with these guys.
So NCell will have to pay the 220% import tax after all – no charges, no penalty, end of story and it is back to business as usual.
Indian businessmen living in Nepal having done trade for hundreds of years have also been caught importing tons of clothes, rice and other commodities disguised in Charity Packaging in order to avoid the crippling tax. They were found out delivering the goods to supermarkets and shops in Kathmandu in fake packaging.
Predictably Aid Food is being stolen and resold at half the market price which, to me, is much worse that loosing the import duty.
However good things get done even though the brave Nepalese people do not have much to say that is positive. Food will not help the trauma and the emotional damage done already. Only some sort of talking therapy will help long term, especially for the children who now associate "home" with danger.
The friends we have are physically ok but most are still living outside in makeshift shelters, dreading the next quake and forthcoming monsoon.
Shoe Krishna's little new born baby boy caught pneumonia staying under the tent and was rushed to an overcrowded and filthy Kathmandu hospital.
It was touch and go for several days as to whether he would survive, but thank goodness he made it.
Mum, Dad and baby Samjit have returned to the village... back under the tent where everybody is getting eaten by mosquitoes.
Now Samjit has diarrhoea.
Our friend Raju's home was also badly hit.
What is left standing will have to be pulled down as the whole building is condemned.
No one knows what to do at the moment. With the monsoon season only weeks away, most of the rebuilding will have to wait until at least November.
There is no-where dry to store the crops when harvest is coming in a few weeks time.
The Monkey House is still standing but with cracks.
My entire collection of rare antique Newari ceramics lovingly gathered over the past 25 years has shattered into millions of pieces.
Durba, our caretaker, Bharat and Kedar went in and cleared the debris and chucked everything out of the windows on top of collapsed dwellings next door...
Woops ! So then no chance for me to try glue some of them back with misty eyes during my next visit in September ?
Durba was most upset and almost inconsolable that my television screen (that l never ever watch) had fallen on the floor and was cracked....
"So very sorry My Lovely Boss, but we will try to get it repaired for you !"
Dear Durba. Bless him. Like if I cared about it.
We have the whole next door family staying downstairs at the Monkey House. They are too frightened to go upstairs. Their roof fell in and it is just a matter of time before the whole house collapses with its people under it.
The family is using a bucket with a rope to draw water from the underground drinking water tank l had built in, but that will dry up soon.
Our problem is that, as usual, there is no drinking water running in the government pipes coming in and we cannot have drinking water delivered privately by tankers as we did in the past, because the streets are full of rubble and support beams.
We cannot draw underground water with our pump (even when there is electricity for a few minutes) because it is gravity fed from the 300 litre tank on my roof that has fallen on top of the solar panels.
That water, as planed, is only used to flush toilets as it is full of metals and chemicals and is not drinkable, even though this is the water most people use.
We now cannot store any water and Kedar cannot get any plumber to agree to climb up to the roof to do the essential repairs as there are constant tremors. They are just too scared that the next tremor will be the dreaded 9 point quake when they are on the ladder.
The next worry is the stench and bacteria from the toilets.
In Etay village in rural Kavre, two hours from Kathmandu, the old buildings of the school l support have been hit again by the second quake. The new building is still up, but most of the internal walls have crashed on the students desks, damaging most of them.
I spoke to Subarna, the Principal at the school, and told him to open the building as a shelter to anybody in need in the community, and to use the football ground as a camp.
At the moment it is not about teaching maths or English, but about providing an environment less frightening than the collapsed or collapsing houses in the village.
As I wrote in my last newsletter, the problem is so enormous that it will take a great deal of time for Nepal and its brave people to get back on their feet.
At the moment I am proposing to help the small community of Etay, where the school is, the best we can.
There is no way we can help rebuilt all the homes that have been lost there, especially in expensive reinforced concrete, without having to make terrible unfair choices as to who can and cannot benefit from our help as well as creating division amongst the different Castes.
It makes sense to raise funds to build at least one solid anti-seismic reinforced concrete pillar system Community Centre / Health Post that would be the safest refuge in the small community.
We feel that £95,000.00 would do it in partnership with the community if the land is provided for free.
This project, with our financial support, would be the best long term gift we could make to this small community and would unite it rather than divide it.
We have so far raised an incredible £18,749.00 and some people are organising some wonderful events on our behalf.
Lets make it happen for them !
Thank you for your support and for your best wishes that I always pass on to our friends and their children in Nepal.
Please spread the word to other like-minded friends whom you feel would like to contribute to this very worthy project.
"Most of us would like to help those who are less fortunate than us achieve goals that, we in the West, take for granted.
I feel it is our duty to help each other, where-ever we find ourselves in the world, as we see others help us in our hours of need."
All my very best to you as well,
A way to contribute is by cheque made payable to
ALAIN ROUVEURE NEPAL FUND
Todenham near Moreton in Marsh
GLOS GL56 9NU . UK
or by bank transfer to
ALAIN ROUVEURE NEPAL FUND
LLOYDS TSB 30 95 75
Account 22238 668
IBAN GB43LOYD 3095 7522 238 668
I had recent great news that the 7000 litre cemented rain water tank you sponsored
last year had resisted the second terrible earthquake and all the smaller ones since !
UK Registered charity No. 1166353