Kabita Shrestha is dressed in a colorful blouse with a purple shawl tucked around her pink sari. She looks as if she doesn't have a care. However, the 26-year-old has seen her share of difficulty. Having lost her mother at a young age, Kabita did not have a chance to study or marry. Instead, she took care of her younger brother and sick father. In April of last year, Kabita injured her leg and lost all personal belongings when her home collapsed during the 7.8 magnitude Nepal earthquake. Then Kabita's brother, who worked as a driver, lost his job. His wife was pregnant. Kabita's father's medical condition worsened. More and more she was struggling to meet the needs of her family.
Week of Compassion, in collaboration with our partner, ACT Alliance, to this day continues to accompany Kabita, her neighbors, and many other families in our efforts to restore their lives. The reconstruction of homes in Nepal has been delayed by a political crisis that followed the adoption of a new constitution last September. While Nepal's political crisis drags on, Kabita and other Sanogoan people have little time to talk politics: they are busy making bricks with supplies purchased from funds provided by Week of Compassion. The tight-knit community plans to rebuild 90 destroyed farm houses. The first bricks go to the most vulnerable families, whose homes will act as models for the rest.
Kabita is hardly the only woman leading reconstruction. Emergency response officer Madhu Sunam enjoys her challenging job and has seen a major change among the women of Sanogoan. "When I first came, women hardly spoke in meetings. They were used to doing household work and farming. The earthquake pushed them out of their comfort zone. The women are now quite vocal, and in many ways lead the efforts in reconstruction."
Despite her countless struggles, Kabita now feels a sense of hope. Together with her friends, she sums up the parts that make up her dream house: "An inside toilet, a comfy kitchen with piped water and a rooftop for sun bathing and drying vegetables." Thanks to your support to Week of Compassion, we will continue to be with Kabita and others in Nepal for the long term and help them move into their new homes soon.
This story was from reports received from our partner, ACT Alliance, which provides periodic reports, progress, and updates throughout the year on our rebuilding efforts in Nepal from the earthquake in 2015.
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