While the world’s attention has turned to the events unfolding within the Middle East, the crisis in Nepal has only deepened. Hit with two catastrophic earthquakes this spring that leveled huge swaths of the interior and left millions homeless, Nepal is now also facing the devastating affects of political instability in the region. In what seemed like a positive national effort following the earthquake, the ruling political parties determined to finally complete and ratify the long-awaited for Nepali constitution to enable the country to move ahead as a whole. The adoption of this constitution only a few months ago officially turned Nepal from a Hindu state into a secular one, a move lauded by many both nationally and internationally.
However, the move incited riots and instability within Nepal for months, as well as soured relations with India, the billion-strong and proudly Hindu nation next door. Recent trade embargoes and blocked border crossings with India have meant skyrocketing fuel prices as the cold of winter sets in. Raw materials to rebuild homes have gone from already over-priced on the post-disaster market, to almost unattainable at times. The cost to fill up a car with fuel is prohibitive, halting much of the relief work done outside of Kathmandu. Heating oil prices for the winter are almost triple the norm as well, making the already vulnerable quake victims that much more exposed to the effects of being homeless through a cold Nepali winter. One friend of ours there says the entire country is having to use firewood to stay warm and cook due to the short supply of heating oil.
Despite the mounting difficulties in this devastated country, we are thankful to hear from our contacts out there that they are still pressing on to help those in need. Thirsty Ground recently received a generous donation for Nepal from a benefit concert in the Pacific Northwest of the USA, put together by a woman with a great heart of compassion towards the forgotten suffering in Nepal. With the present situation going on there were hindrances making sure the resources got to the right people, but we confirmed this week that they did.
The girl’s house has already purchased a large quantity of cloth to have the girls (many of these girls whom live there were themselves rescued from human traffickers) sew warm clothes and jackets for the quake victims. Two needy locations we had been hoping to help with tin for temporary shelters will now be supplied. A village group from near the Tibetan border that lost everything and migrated as a whole to a new location in the foot hills is among the groups being helped. A third location will also be able to be surveyed for distributing tin supplies, after delivering winter cloths and jackets there, now that fuel can be purchased for travel.
Please keep praying for the Nepali believers as they seek to extend compassion to those still suffering from the quake months later. They are also continuing to help the affected churches, and support newly established ones that God has brought forth in recent days. The work with the anti-trafficking rescue work continues on as well, the traffickers unabated by the country’s chaos, and in fact likely benefiting from it. With the world’s eyes on Islamic extremism right now, don’t forget to also pray for those silently suffering in Nepal as well!