July 12, 2021
Besides the regular projects of improved cooking stoves ovens in the uphill of Kaski District and drinking water supply and alternative / renewable energy promotion in different districts of Nepal, the Unica Foundation also offers quick support projects as an emergency to the project sites, depending upon need basis. To highlight this, the Unica Foundation for example supported in Gorkha district, near the epicenter of disastrous earthquake in 2015, by providing 3000 WakaWaka lights as an emergency disaster response.
Nepal is prone to various geological and hydro-meteorological hazards. Monsoon in one hand is a boon for Nepalese farmers to carry out rice planting but on the other hand it often brings natural calamities such as floods and landslides which claim many lives and property every year. Due to the continuous rainfall, a source of drinking water was completely washed-out in June by a heavy landslide in the eastern bank of the Seti River in Pokhara Metropolitan City, ward no. 15, Amintara settlement.
Amintara settlement is known as slum area where mainly landless and poor people are living since decades. A huge cliff collapsed and fell down, destroying the water collection chamber which was the only source of supplying clean drinking water for 175 households (769 population – 381 female & 388 male) in the settlement. The community uses an electricity lifting water supply which is now completely interrupted, without any alternative arrangement. People are being deprived from access of safe drinking water and basic sanitation and hygiene due to this situation. So, an immediate action for emergency relief on alternate management of drinking water is essential for the community to ensure the access of drinking water, sanitation and hygiene.
Nepal Red Cross Society (NRCS) Kaski, a partner of the Unica Foundation since one and a half decades eventually contacted the Unica Foundation about the emergency and requested the options for emergency response to work on drinking water supply for the settlement. Considering the urgency, the Unica Foundation has decided to support € 10 thousand to provide relief and combat the situation.
Corresponding with concerned authorities and stakeholders, NRCS has discussed with the ward office (official unit of the local government) and water user’s committee from Amintara to act immediately without making any delay in response. Through mutual agreement and coordination, common conclusion was to dig a borehole as an alternative to supply the water in the settlement. As the support from the Unica Foundation covered around 80% of the project costs, the local authorities have also agreed to contribute to the alternative water supply for the settlement. On 30 June 2021, only two weeks after the landslide, there was an inaugural ceremony of borehole digging. It will be completed within a month and expected to be finished by the end of July 2021.