KATHMANDU, Nepal, April 27, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Development partners must act swiftly and effectively to meet the needs of children and families recovering after a devastating 7.8-magnitude earthquake and series of powerful aftershocks rocked Nepal over the weekend, says Plan International, a global children's charity.
With the start of the monsoon season only a few weeks, emergency specialists from Plan arrived in Nepal today to join country-based staff to carry out a rapid assessment of where help is most needed.
Plan has committed to focus its response on communities in the most remote areas where aid might otherwise struggle to reach, leaving those people particularly vulnerable. Plan has an extensive presence in Nepal, with field offices in areas severely impacted by the earthquake, including Makwanpur and Baglung.
Plan International is appealing for more than $1M to fund the first six months of emergency response, although the recovery period will likely take several years.
"It's important that aid reaches these communities as quickly as possible. Most of the houses in these areas weren't built to withstand an earthquake of this magnitude, so people have been left sleeping outside," said Mattias Bryneson, Country Director of Plan Nepal.
"When the weather turns, these communities will be at greater risk from landslides and the spread of diseases. As part of our first wave of response, we will focus on providing shelter materials like tarpaulins, blankets, and mosquito nets so displaced persons can at least have somewhere safe to sleep," he added.
"It is already starting to rain and families with babies and young children are left out in the wet and the cold. People are still in shock and trying to come to terms with what has happened to them, so it's imperative that we move quickly and in coordination with other aid agencies."
Saturday's earthquake, which was felt in both Bangladesh and India, affected 30 of 75 districts in Nepal. Many of the most remote areas are still yet to be reached by emergency responders while roads and bridges have been badly damaged.
Plan has launched an international appeal to help fund the distribution of aid and relief supplies. Please support the emergency appeal: https://www.planusa.org/content3122301.
Note to Editors: Photos from Nepal are available for download and use at: http://mediabank.plan-international.org/?c=22061&k=f5494169bd
Staff from Plan International in Nepal and staff at the Asia Regional Office and headquarters are available for interviews.
About Plan Nepal:
Plan has been working in Nepal since 1978, helping poor children to access their rights to health, education, economic security, and protection. In the hundreds of communities that we work with, there are difficulties accessing adequate health care and sanitation. The communities are often impoverished, which can leave them vulnerable. Plan has active programming and works with children and communities throughout earthquake-affected areas, and has field office in Makwanpur and Balung, close to the epicenter.
About Plan International USA
Plan International USA is part of the Plan International Federation, a global organization that works side by side with communities in 50 developing countries to end the cycle of poverty for children and their families. Plan works at the community level to develop customized solutions and ensure long-term sustainability. Our solutions are designed up-front to be owned by communities for generations to come and range from clean water and health care programs to education projects and child protection initiatives. For more information, please visit www.PlanUSA.org.
SOURCE Plan International USA