As aftershocks rattle the country, causing widespread panic and residents to seek shelter in open spaces, emergency relief organizations scramble to provide the lifesaving necessities of food, water, and shelter, especially in view of the monsoon season.
In response to the disaster, SYL Foundation started a Nepal Earthquake Fund and will continue to collect donations throughout 2015 for this cause. The Foundation’s strategy on disaster relief aid is focused on long-term recovery. For example, the Foundation supported the building of Hôpital Universitaire de Mirebalais after the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. With the state of the art teaching hospital, we are able to contribute to the long-term improvement of health care for hundreds of thousands of people who previously had limited access to it. In 2011, after the massive earthquake and tsunami hit Japan, the Foundation dedicated its resources to help Koyo Maritime High School which had been destroyed by the tsunami and also contributed to the recovery of Japanese fishing villages by providing work sheds for the fishermen who’s livelihoods were upended by the disaster. As apparent in these examples, an aspect of the Foundation’s disaster relief strategy is to select local partners and projects that are not only sustainable, but benefit the local community well into the future, especially in the areas of health and education. Projects and partners that are based locally stay beyond the initial emergency. They are in it for the long haul, and employ local staff who speak the language, provide unique insight and are directly connected to the community. Essentially, we support projects that help disaster-affected areas recover long-term, build back stronger and better, with improved health services and educational opportunities.
As emergency aid is never enough, SYL Foundation will continue to monitor Nepal’s conditions in the coming months as it moves from relief to recovery. Join us as we support the country’s efforts to rebuild and create a more resilient and bright future. As always, SYL Foundation is deeply grateful to the True Buddha School community worldwide for contributing to its mission. A special thank you to the Seattle Temple (a.k.a. Ling Shen Ching Tze Temple) for donating USD $10,000 to the Nepal Earthquake Fund.