By Kanmani Venkateswaran and Marcus Moench
Photos by Michelle F. Fox
The recent major earthquakes in Nepal and their devastating effects have sparked extensive international involvement and major fundraising initiatives. As disaster response and aid funds deplete in the coming months, it will become critical for Nepal to spend the remaining money in ways that maximize the recovery of the millions affected. A recent study conducted by ISET-International, ISET-Nepal, Practical Action Nepal and the Zurich Flood Resilience Programme on the 2014 Karnali floods indicates that the disaster management system in Nepal is weak. Recovery, in particular, is challenging as government-led recovery primarily focuses on physical infrastructure. People are left to recover on their own, often building back to more vulnerable and less resilient states due to economic loss and a lack of resources. While shelter is the most immediate need following the earthquake, most communities have already begun to identify drinking water, sanitation, micro irrigation, access to affordable energy and communications as bottlenecks to recovery.