We were able to provide temporary housing for 16 more families who were living in extremely basic plastic tents on the roadside in Bungamati. All the families lost their homes during the earthquake and most of them were living in small tents on the side of the road. On June 15th 2015 the 16 families, consisting of about 50 family members, moved into the building after a simple dedication ceremony. As these families moved into our temporary housing currently total of 52 families are living in our temporary housing projects.
The biggest challenge to providing temporary shelter in this area is the lack of land to build on. Often it is a long process and we need to get all kinds of permits and signed agreements. We were able to overcome all the challenges and build one building consisting of 16 separate rooms for sixteen families in less than two weeks.
After receiving the necessary documents I met with two carpenters and discussed the design of our building and made all the necessary arrangements. Dinesh, my project manager, took responsibility for managing construction. Communicating with me daily, Dinesh organized volunteers and workers, purchased the material and completed the construction within our time frame. The facilities included two toilets, electricity, and a drinking water storage tank.
Mrs. Meena, the Nagarapalika is the government officer in charge of Bungamati. I met her several times personally and her support was crucial in getting the permits ready to build on government land. I spoke with Col. Ram Bhandari, the commanding officer of Lagankhel Shree Rajdal Battalion of the Nepalese military and requested an excavator for clearing the land. He whole-heartedly agreed and sent the excavator the next day. Cap. Arun, who helped me several other occasions, took a personal interest in this project and helped us to clear some challenges. He personally attended the meetings with the government officers.
After the families moved into the building, we had a simple opening ceremony. I invited the government officials who helped us, Col. Bhandari and other Army officers and our Sri Lankan Ambassador Nepal to attend the special event. They all came and the whole community joyfully celebrated as 16 families moved out of tents into our temporary housing. We offered lunch to about 150 people who attended the opening ceremony. It was a welcome relief in the almost continual tension families displaced by the earthquake experience.
Everybody who helped and our sponsors are remembered with gratitude. Thank you. Miracles continue to happen with your help.