Incessant rainfalls in South Asia have triggered massive floods and landslides, destroying farmlands, houses and roads, as well as killing innocent lives. It is estimated that up to 41 million people are affected in India, Nepal and Bangladesh, where over a million people are displaced. Survivors are experiencing food and water shortages, and humanitarian workers fear the outbreak of waterborne diseases.
Living in a Hindu country with the caste system, the women of Nepal were traditionally being oppressed. They had a far lower chance to receive education and employment than men. In the worst case, some women in the countryside had to gain permission from their husbands and in-laws for things as trivial as leaving the house, hence they were mostly bound to the kitchens and farms.
The Monsoon storms and Typhoon were devastating to Bangladesh, Myanmar, India, and Nepal last year around this time. This year, millions of residents of South Asia continued to suffer from the floods and landslides caused by the violent weather, and are in great need of our help and prayers.
15 months after the earthquake in Nepal, floods and landslides caused by heavy rain struck the country in more than half of the provinces. Till 27 July, there are already 7,900 households affected and 5,400 families displaced. CEDAR’s partner, Asal Chhimekee Nepal-Pokhara (A.C.N), are now sending emergency relief support to one of the severely hit districts, Nawalparasi.
It has been half a year since the earthquake in Nepal, and the relief and rehabilitation effort still continue. At the same time, the Nepalese Government had passed new constitution law in mid-September and the first female president was elected in October. These new changes will hopefully stabilize the situation there and allow the citizens to return to normal livelihood.
“When I found out I was sold by my husband, I wanted to end my life.” Growing up in the mountain area in Nepal, Suntali was married at the age of 15 and she had two daughters and a son. To support her family, Suntali worked in other people’s farms and earned very little money. She then followed her husband and went to Saudi Arabia to work as a domestic helper. At first, she thought she could earn a better income to improve her family’s life, but unfortunately she suffered constant hunger, physical violence and even sexual assault. Later, Suntali discovered that her husband had sold her for 20,000 Rupees (about US$200). It was a shock to her and she once thought about committing suicide, but the next thought of her lovely children kept her alive. In the end, with the help of her family and relief agency in Nepal, Suntali returned home safely.