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“I felt like an orphan”

Wednesday, June 24, 2015 - 17:12

It was like a dream or something that we never thought of. I don’t know how to explain it but as I saw my house collapsed in front of my eyes it gave me a big shock. The house which I ran turned into remains. My daughter in law and my grandson got injured while escaping from a house in the earthquake. I didn’t want to keep them here for long so I sent them to my daughter in law’s home in Pokhara.

We stayed outside in a makeshift camp for six days and I felt like an orphan or a homeless and I couldn’t figure out what was happening. We had livestock for our livelihood and I had to lose one ox and a cow in this tremor. House was gone but to see livestock’s dying was another shock among all these shocks and aftershocks. It was our misfortune that we hadn’t been able to take food out of the collapsed house. Then we heard that some organization was coming to distribute relief materials. We also received the relief food from ActionAid. It was a good package.

As time passed, we started realizing that the makeshift camp wasn’t going to be home. We needed a place which could also save us from the monsoon which was coming closer and closer. Then we heard that ActionAid was helping people build temporary shelters. We heard that CGI sheets were being distributed. It was some good news after all the chaotic situations. We then collected the CGI sheets provided by ActionAid and also got shelter construction tools with it. We couldn’t build the house in the previous place as a lot of bad memories were there within the rubbles. It was our dream which led broken in the ground.

 

It was great that along with the materials, we had a technical person deployed by ActionAid to support us construct the shelters. They guided us and we worked with them. They counseled us and the best part is they keep visiting us and suggested us in many ways. They constantly said us to have windows in the home and maintain the roof at least of 8 feet height from the ground. One of the overseers scolded us as our house didn’t have much height. Having this shelter has provided me an opportunity to help other needy people. We stay together with a neighbor and one relative here. They too have a painful story like most homeless people here.  The earthquake made the community believe more in togetherness, equality and unity. The neighbor staying with us is a Dalit who once used to be considered untouchable. I am very thankful to ActionAid and Community Self Reliance Center (CSRC) who have been with us in this hard time.

Written by; 

Bisesh Sangat 

ActionAid Nepal