Dr Ian Matheson and his wife Rosa returned to Nepal on 22 March for six weeks, to mark the anniversary of the 2015 earthquake that shattered the small mountainous nation.
They return in early May with copies of a ‘Earthquake, the human story,’ a book written to raise money for the numerous projects that are trying to rebuild and assist those in need of help because of the earthquakes, and act as an historical record to inform the world through people’s voices.
The Highworth couple were part of Health Partnership Nepal in Spring 2009. Whilst in Kathmandu they were approached by Amrit Bikram Shahi, now known as Angel, requesting the assistance of a doctor and medicines for some children who were unwell in his orphanage.
The couple have been supporting Angel’s Orphanage ever since, fundraising and making regular visits to deliver supplies, toys and essential materials. All of this they have done through the charity they created called Friends of Angel’s Orphanage.
Angel looks after a group of orphaned and abandoned street children who have been together for several years. The Friends provide money for food, shelter, education and now employment training.
In April 2015 Rosa and Ian left the country a couple of days before the huge earthquake which struck. In the last 12 months they have worked hard to raise money for Nepal and have returned twice. On this trip they were joined by fellow trustee Brian Mildenhall who has travelled to Nepal several times and fellow volunteers Laurence Rew, Anna Marques and Dee Freeston.
Rosa said: “Our luggage included all the usual items like knitting wool, pencils and books which have very kindly been donated this time by James and Emma Phipps and delivered to the devastated village of Kodari in Sindpalchowk, around three and a half hours from Kathmandu by 4 x 4. We have a lot more to be taken on future trips.
“Things are incredibly hard there because of the lack of the basics – gas, electricity, water and fuel are all in short supply in the capital Kathmandu, and it’s a lot worse in the more remote districts.”
Earthquake Nepal 2015 – The Human Story is a collection of contributions written by more than 50 plus people and organisations – locals and foreigners – from a waiter, volunteers, doctors, students, children, a mother having a baby, teachers, a dancer, trek guides, relatives abroad, a Rotarian to reporters – on the mountains, in the towns and in the villages – illustrated with moving photographs.
Rosa said: “It is a truly humbling and awesome book, a testament to people’s humanity, resilience, pride, courage and tremendous kindness. One cannot read it and not be moved, sometimes to sadness, sometimes to joy and often to wonder at the majesty of human nature.”
To reserve your copy of Earthquake Nepal 2015 – The Human Story, contact Rosa via www:the100womenbookproject.com
Help Friends of Angel’s Orphanage via: www.angelsorphanage.com