When a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Nepal in April 2015, it brought devastation and heartache to the Himalayan country. Followed by a series of powerful aftershocks, this tragic disaster took more than 8,800 lives and damaged or destroyed more than 900,000 homes. The earthquake’s effects were far-reaching: collapsed schools, compromised water systems, and lost sources of income among them.
Thanks to generous donations in the quake’s aftermath, the global Red Cross network was able to deliver lifesaving support and supplies to people in need. Nearly 8,000 Red Cross staff and volunteers mobilized to provide humanitarian aid such as medical care, emergency shelter, food, water, hygiene kits, blankets, kitchen items, and cash to help families survive in the critical days and weeks after the disaster.
The global Red Cross network continues to provide vital support in Nepal as people rebuild their lives and communities. This includes restoring families’ sources of income, constructing water systems in remote villages, and teaching people the skills they need to make their homes safer during future disasters.
Red Cross staff and volunteers mobilized.
received cash grants in preparation for winter.
received emergency shelter materials or tools.
Gita Rumba and her son, Yursang, sit in front of their small shop in Namtar. Gita and her family received relief supplies in the quake’s aftermath—such as cooking necessities and hygiene items. In preparation for winter, the American Red Cross gave her warm clothing for Yursang, including the jacket he’s wearing today.
Earthquake survivors in Makwanpur practice their construction skills during a week-long mason training. Participants in this intensive workshop learn how to build and repair houses in a way that makes them safer during future disasters.
Earthquake survivor, Santa Lama, helps construct a water tank in his hometown of Lagu Tol. The town is only accessible by foot and now has a 10,000-liter water tank, thanks in part to the American Red Cross.
Manga Maya Tamang stoops in her makeshift kitchen, holding the tea kettle she heats up each day over a handmade fire. It’s one of many kitchen items that she bought with a cash grant from the American Red Cross.
Partnership in Disaster Preparedness
The American Red Cross has been working in Nepal for more than a decade. In recent years, we have helped students and teachers in 220 schools to prepare for disasters by training them in first aid and light search & rescue, organizing emergency simulations and drills, and creating school disaster preparedness plans.
When the quake hit, 15-year-old Regish Giri—who took part in a Nepal Red Cross earthquake preparedness program at his school—was at home with his family and knew what to do. Regish, who lives in the hard-hit Sindhupalchowk District, remembers, “I was playing with my little brother in my room when everything started to shake,” he said. “I knew we needed to cover our heads and get to an open space.” Regish picked up his younger brother and convinced his frightened aunt and mother to come outside. “We were falling as we ran away, but we got to a field, away from buildings and trees and lay down.”