UN and partners appeal for $415 million to aid quake-stricken Nepal [EN/NE]

(Kathmandu/Geneva/New York, 29 April 2015): The United Nations and partners appealed today for US$415 million urgently needed to provide vital relief to people affected by the devastating earthquake in Nepal. The joint action plan, outlined in the Flash Appeal document, aims to support Government efforts in addressing the most critical needs for shelter, water and sanitation, emergency health, food, and protection over the next three months.

The 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Nepal on 25 April at 11:56 a.m. local time creating large-scale damage across the country, including in the densely-populated Kathmandu Valley. More than 5,000 people people lost their lives and at least 10,194 people have been injured in the tremor and the many aftershocks that followed. Some 70,000 houses were destroyed and another 530,000 homes damaged across 39 of Nepal’s 75 districts. Millions of people are in need of food assistance.

In the immediate aftermath of the disaster, the Government, humanitarian and international partners launched a massive relief operation. Search and rescue and medical teams are tirelessly working to find survivors and providing urgent medical care. Safe drinking water is also being provided to the quake victims and food was dispatched for immediate distribution.

“The timing of the intervention remains of the essence,” said the UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Nepal, Jamie McGoldrick, adding “although I am heartened and encouraged by the progress of the response to date, efforts need to be maintained and stepped up to ensure vital assistance reaches all the affected, especially those in the remote areas”.

The appeal reflects both the scale of the needs and the significant logistical challenges linked to providing an effective large-scale humanitarian response in hard-to-reach, mountainous areas. Partners will provide emergency shelter to 500,000 people who remain in the open, braving the damp and cold weather; emergency health services and medical supplies and facilities; and safe drinking water and sanitation facilities urgently needed for up to 4.2 million people. Up to 1.4 million people will benefit from food assistance, including the 750,000 affected in hard-to-reach areas. Some 2.1 million children and 525,000 women will benefit from protection assistance.

“As the monsoon season approaches, this is likely to become an added logistical challenge in providing humanitarian assistance,” said Mr. McGoldrick. “Funding is needed immediately to continue the relief operations.” The UN Central Emergency Response Fund has made US$ 15 million available to jump-start humanitarian activities on the ground.

For further information please contact:
Orla Fagan, Public Information Officer, OCHA Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific
Tel: +977.9860.889.209 or +66.899.447.623; e-mail: fagano@un.org

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs:
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.