May 12, 2015

ADRA, GlobalMedic Raise Medical Tents in Nepal

ADRA has joined forces with GlobalMedic, a nonsectarian humanitarian aid organization, to provide large tents that will provide a temporary place for Nepalese health posts that were damaged, destroyed, or simply overrun with patients in connection with last month’s earthquake.

The Adventist Development and Relief Agency and the other nongovernmental organization are distributing a total of 15 tents — 10 in the Kavre district, including one at the Adventist-operated Scheer Memorial Hospital, and five in the Dhading district. Both districts are outside the capital, Kathmandu.

A 36-by-20-foot (10-by-6-meter) tent was delivered on Monday to Scheer Memorial Hospital.

The hospital was not damaged by the April 25 earthquake, which killed more than 7,900 people, but the tent will allow it provide treatment and longer stays to more patients.

“This tent is going to allow us to hang onto patients that could go back but don't have a home to go back to,” said hospital president Dale Mole. “After the earthquake we had to have C-sections outdoors because patients were too afraid to enter. This tent gives us capacity we’ve never had before.”

The tents are multipurpose, said David Sakaki, a GlobalMedic volunteer.

“They could be used for hospitals or for child-friendly spaces, or medical storage,” he said.

A total of 240 health posts were destroyed in Nepal, and 347 others suffered severe damage.

Simon Lewis, a member of ADRA’s emergency response team and a former ADRA Nepal country director, said the 15 tents will make a large difference in the community but a lot of need remains unmet.

“For now, these communities in Dhading and Kavre will have somewhere safe, secure, and dry to meet their doctor, nurse or health worker in dignity,” Lewis said. “But we still need support from the global community to help us provide tents for healthcare.”

The distribution of the tents comes days after ADRA and Scheer hospital announced that they were teaming up to provide healthcare in far-flung Nepalese villages. The mobile medical camps will start traveling from village to village in the Sindhupalchok district in about 10 days, providing reproductive healthcare, including pre and postnatal care, as well as lab testing and psychosocial counseling.

Read “ADRA Teams Up With Scheer Hospital in Nepal”

Meanwhile, the Adventist Church in Nepal distributed food and tents to people in Bhattadanda village in the Lalitpur district, about 25 miles (40 kilometers) from Kathmandu.

Umesh Pokharel, president of the Nepal church, said seven people died in the village and all the houses in the area, which is populated by typical tribal people, suffered structural damage or were destroyed. He said the damaged village school was closed and the principal told him that he hoped to start holding classes in a temporary shelter in a week.

“Although there is no Adventist presence, we are helping these people in need,” he told the Adventist Review.

Pokharel’s main focus had been on assisting Adventist believers and their neighbors.

“Jesus loves all people and allows them to see Himself in our actions,” he said. “That is our main purpose. This is a time of love, care, and concern for those who have lost relatives, homes, and even their mental wellness. We need to show that Jesus loves them and let people see that Jesus died for all.”