Impact of Livelihood Support in bringing smile in earthquake affected family

Durga Kumari Nepali, Kiwool – 4, felt the devastating earthquake at her 40 years of age. She is survived with her husband and two daughters. The earthquake compels them to live the life of squatter as they had no savings. The unforeseen earthquake of 2015 aggravated their living conditions. Being a woman, belonging to a Dalit caste and disabled, it was ever challenging for her to make a livelihood. As her husband works as labour for the earning, their capacity was very limited.
Ms. Nepali was the one who was selected as one of the beneficiaries of the livelihood support program supported by HELVETAS and SOLIDAR. She was selected based on the scorecard assessment where family situation, means of livelihood, earning, dependent, family situation, physical condition etc. were the criteria mentioned in the card. After the selection, and verification by the secretary of the then Village Development Committee, the EREAP project supported her with an unconditional cash grant of NRs 25000 in late 2016.
After receiving the cash support from the project, Ms. Nepali decided to buy a sewing machine as they were free to make their own decision on the grant received. After purchasing the sewing machine, she took off to utilize her skill (which was also her caste based occupation). Thanks to her dedication and hard work in sewing clothes, she started earning the cash. She began by sewing clothes of neighbours and community people, and currently she is operating regularly by the roadside temporary shelter. “She earns around NRs. 500 on the daily basis from her sewing work”, said her husband, Gopi Nepali, with a smile full of satisfaction on his face. She measures clothes with her hand and palm even without a conversation as she is disabled by voice.
They are satisfied with their increased capacity, but the next thing worrying them is, they did agreement to build the house but they have no land. “We are very grateful that HELVETAS and SOLIDAR supported us with the grant, however, we hope the organization would also support landless people like us to build the house as well” says Gopi Nepali.
HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation and Solidar Suisse joined in a consortium with support from Swiss Solidarity to implement the Economic Recovery of Earthquake Affected Population (EREAP) project, which was designed and implemented to support earthquake affected most vulnerable households in 8 VDCs of Sindhupalchok district (most affected district) to enable their recovery of livelihoods. The primary stakeholders are the women and men, especially those who are economically poor and socially marginalized in terms of gender, ethnicity and caste. Single women, Women-headed households, Pregnant and lactating women, Infants care (Unpaid care), Disabled, Elderly, Ethnic Minority, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) etc. were identified as vulnerable person or group by the shelter cluster and hence were provisioned with selection criteria in the adopted scorecard to increase percentage of beneficiaries from the disadvantaged groups. As a result, 2456 earthquake affected most vulnerable households (57% men and 43% women of which 73% are janajati, 13% Dalit, 4% Janajati Newar and 10% others) were supported with livelihood support cash grants for the recovery of their livelihoods.