Nepal Earthquake Anniversary; What Happened After One Year in Kathmandu
It was a year ago when a devastating earthquake hit Nepal. Thousands of families were displaced, thousands injured, and thousands died as well. A year later, records show that most survivors still live in relocation sites despite billions of dollars in aid and relief given to the country for assistance. Are grief and devastation the only things that have remained in the region?
In 2015, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit near the country of Nepal, destroying millions of houses, roads, infrastructures, villages and killing approximately 9,000 people and leaving 22,000 injured.
Reuters said that in the capital, Kathmandu, Prime Minister K.P. Oli placed a wreath in a collapsed building, signifying a day of mourning to remember the victims of the earthquake.
The monks at a nearby UNESCO world heritage site led the prayers for the victims while the families, still bearing heavy grief, prayed with them. One family member, remembering her late father said in an interview with Reuters, "I came to mourn my father who died here last year. I prayed for eternal peace for the soul."
But are mourning the only thing there one year after the Nepal earthquake After the devastating event, millions, even billions of help poured in. Reuters said a total of $1.4 billion pledges remain unspent and thousands of families still live in temporary shelters because they have no means to rebuild their homes and their lives.
This led to protesters to demand the government to continue rebuilding what has been promised to them with the aid of foreign relief. The government replied by saying they will arrange for the housing development before the rainy days come this June.
Meanwhile, according to The Himalayan Times about 85 scientists also met to mark the first anniversary of the Nepal earthquake. The event was organized by the The National Seismological Centre under the Department of Mines and Geology. Renowned Geologist Prof. Jean-Philippe Avouac joined the recently concluded gathering to present his paper about the Nepal earthquake.
The meeting was instigated to discuss and study what transpired during the event, lessons and leanings from the earthquake until the rescue and rehabilitation phase. They said this workshop will help Nepal to build a "safer community and sustainable development".
Although reports say that a lot of the victims are yet to receive help from the government, there are those who are lucky enough to receive a new beginning after the quake. In a report by CNN, they met Maya Gurung, a 10-year old survivor of the Nepal earthquake.
She is now an amputee but a professional hiker, Jwalant Gurung chanced upon her during the relief operations and gave her a second chance at life. He decided to convince Maya's parents to let him help their child by bringing her to the capital.
Today, Maya can now walk with the help of prosthetic leg and is attending school with children half her age.
Although help for most victims are yet to come, some survivors are continuously receiving help. Thanks to the good hearts of people like Jwalant, despite slow rehabilitation efforts a year after the earthquake, people like Maya are receiving help and getting another chance at life.