ActionAid Blog

This week ActionAid teamed up with Greenpeace and its most famous ship, the Rainbow Warrior, to deliver aid to cyclone-struck Vanuatu.

Rainbow Warrior welcome to Vanuatu

Posted by Mike Fincken on Sunday, May 17, 2015

 

The Rainbow Warrior set sail from Sydney three weeks ago to reach Vanuatu.  The South Pacific Ocean island nation - made up of 82 islands - was devastated by Cyclone Pam two months ago.  The cyclone killed 24 people, destroyed nearly all of the nation's food crops and left many people homeless.

This week, NIRBHAYA the Play makes its return to the London stage after a tour which has taken it to India and New York. Its appearance a year ago left a marked impression on me and indeed many of the audience.

2014's cast members and director of the play 'Nirbhaya' by ActionAid's installation
2014's cast members and director of the play 'Nirbhaya' by ActionAid's installation
Photo: ActionAid

The play's being shown at the Southbank Centre from Thur 21 to Sun 24 May. The idea for the production came from the shocking story of Jyoti Singh. On 16 December 2012 this young woman boarded a bus in New Delhi with a male friend. The brutal gang rape that followed was shocking. Jyoti later died from her injuries. People around the world were absolutely enraged and men and women took to the streets in India to demand justice for Jyoti.

When ActionAid supporter and actor James Purefoy heard about the two devastating earthquakes that struck Nepal, he immediately donated to our Nepal Emergency Appeal, and then he took time out of his busy filming schedule to record this special video message.

Watch James Purefoy's video message and donate to support ActionAid's Nepal Emergency Appeal
Photo: ActionAid

 

As James says, we've been on the ground in Nepal since the first earthquake struck, working round the clock witth local staff and partners to help survivors.

And thanks to our generous supporters we've already reached 77,000 people with essential survival kits in some of the hardest hit rural areas, with food, water, hygiene kits, groundsheets and mattresses.

Today’s earthquake in Nepal is terrible news - coming just as a semblance of normality was returning to the country and the aftershocks had died down from the first quake two weeks ago. Please donate to help us get aid to survivors. Wherever possible, people had started to move back home from their temporary shelters. They will be back on the streets again tonight, sheltering under tarpaulin – terrified, and with terrible memories reawakened.

People run out onto a Kathmandu street as an earthquake measuring 7.3 in magnitude hits Nepal on 12 May 2015
People run out onto a Kathmandu street as an earthquake measuring 7.3 in magnitude hits Nepal
Photo: Srikanth Kolari/ActionAid

Earthquakes affect everyone. Our own staff in Nepal have been coming to work every day since the first earthquake stuck, while worrying about their own families and homes. Our team distributing aid today in Rasuwa had to run to survive a landslide caused by the second quake. Thankfully they’re now safely back at base.

This morning a second earthquake has hit Nepal. The earthquake that hit on Saturday 25th April has already killed over 8,150 people and injured over 17,860. This second disaster will have caused even more damage and left many more homeless and hungry. Our staff in Nepal are already assessing the damage. Please donate now and follow our updates below.

A young Nepalese mother who ran out onto the street when the second earthquake struck Kathmandu.
A young Nepalese mother who ran out onto the street when the second earthquake struck Kathmandu.
Photo: Srikanth Kolari/ActionAid

See where we're delivering aid on this map

 
  • red
    25th April earthquake
  • orange
    12th May earthquake

 

Tue 19 May 11.13: The number of people killed by the two earthquakes is now more than 8,500 (8,567), making it the most deadly earthquake disaster in Nepal’s history.

Concerns are being raised about trafficking gangs luring children and young girls made homeless by the earthquake in Nepal with the promise of jobs in India and beyond. All too often these young people can end up in appalling conditions, tied into a life of hard labour or exploitative sex work. 

A young Nepali girl stands amidst the ruins caused by the earthquake in Kathmandu.
A young Nepali girl stands amidst the ruins caused by the earthquake in Kathmandu. Girls made homeless by the earthquake are vulnerable to being trafficked into brothels
Photo: Prashanth Vishwanathan/ActionAid

Nepal has a strong tradition of migration for work but also a serious trafficking problem. Some estimates suggest as many as 15,000 young women are trafficked every year into brothel work in India.

No child wants to leave their family and education to go and work in a foreign country. No parent wants to send their child away. Few young women in traditional societies want to take the risk of leaving the communities they know. Poverty and vulnerability drives people into this, it’s a solution of desperation.