Please Pray for Nepal

10 November 2015

Our Mission Partners in Nepal have been telling us for some weeks of the terrible situation in Nepal, due to the Indian blockade on the border which is preventing badly needed fuel and building materials from reaching the people of Nepal. It has gone on so long that it is causing real hardship and as winter approaches there are real fears for people's health as well as the tragic disruption of the post-earthquake recovery.

Malcolm Ramsay has sent these two links so that you can find out more and share the concern with others.

Please remember the people of Nepal in your prayers.

http://nepalitimes.com/blogs/kundadixit/2015/11/03/flag-waving/

http://n.mynews.ly/!MB.DEr7X

 

 

30 November 2015

Below is a summary of the impact of the Indian border blockade on UMN's work. Please keep the people of Nepal in your prayers.

 

India Border Blockade Impact on UMN's Work

Situation report as at 27th November 2015

Summary:The blockade of the India-Nepal border is impacting on UMNs work and the lives of the people living in UMN's project areas. Feedback from our cluster based colleagues suggests that the impacts are greater in the Terai than the hills/mountains, not least because of the insecurity and the greater reliance on wheeled transport. But the impact in the hills/mountains seems to be gradually increasing. A summary of the feedback by cluster is in the table below. A brief overall summary is:

(a)    Impact on Technical support from outside cluster:  so far this has been minimized, but in the Terai especially the security situation has caused some technical support visits to be postponed. When they do happen, transport costs are higher.

(b)   Impact on travel within the clusters:the cost and scarcity of fuel is having a significant impact. Although some fuel is generally available, the uncertainty means that movement is restricted and partner support is being reduced. The security situation in Rupandehi and Sunsari adds another layer of restriction in these two clusters.

(c)    Activities Postponed: some rescheduling has been necessary in every cluster except Mugu. In addition, the cost of activities is rising significantly, and even when they do take place there are often less participants as it is difficult for them to travel to the venues.

(d)   Impacts on Poor People in the cluster areas: the main impacts seem to be: many of those who have been using gas for cooking are now using firewood; more difficult to travel to get medical treatment, especially if there is a need to go out of district; more difficult to take produce to the market; less food in the market and the price of what is available has increased significantly; daily wages workers are losing their jobs; less fertiliser available for farmers.

(e)   Impacts from a gender perspective:public transport is overcrowded and for women this is uncomfortable, unsafe and more possibility of abuse. For pregnant women and small children even more so; ambulances may not be available to take women to hospital in emergencies eg for delivery; increased use of firewood for cooking is impacting on women's health; workload is increasing.

(f)     Impacts from an environmental perspective:  the main impact is increased use of firewood due to decrease in availability of cooking gas - in turn this leads to greater deforestation, impact on ecosystem  and air pollution.

(g)    Impacts from a conflict perspective:increased conflict on public transport due to  fewer seats and higher prices; conflicts between suppliers of black market goods and buyers - some are reporting neighbours to police leading to arrests; tensions causing increased domestic violence;  in Sunsari, significant political conflicts which affects people who "take sides".

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