Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Nepal has recorded 750,000 confirmed cases with over 10,000 deaths. At one point, the country had one of the world’s highest positivity rates.
The McConnell Foundation has funded work in Nepal since 1999, supporting projects related to rural development, leadership capacity for rural women, and countering domestic violence through community-level justice systems. To help address the many health and economic impacts of the pandemic, the Foundation made a US$100,000 grant to benefit four organizations battling COVID-19 on different fronts:
In the far west of Nepal, the grant will support Nyaya Health Nepal’s work to reduce COVID-19 morbidity and mortality at Bayalpata Hospital in Accham District. The project will help people like 34-year old Harka Saud, a migrant worker and main breadwinner of his family who recently returned from India and recovered at Bayalpata Hospital after he tested positive for COVID-19. Sano Paila’s project focuses on Birgunj and surrounding areas on the Indian border near the main conduit to Kathmandu. Their comprehensive project is providing underserved communities with a wide variety of needs, ranging from isolation beds and oxygen concentrators to hygiene kits and food supplies.
In Kathmandu, Nepal Goodweave Foundation (NGF) will use funds to promote disease prevention and provide relief supplies for vulnerable textile workers and children. And KOSHISH will deliver special health and emotional outreach to people with mental disabilities and to individuals experiencing mental health problems due to the many stressors of the pandemic.
By supporting a variety of trusted Nepalese charities, The McConnell Foundation is leveraging diverse local knowledge and resources to provide rapid pandemic relief. Thanks to their long-term investments and familiarity with the region, the Foundation is well-positioned to make a positive impact.
Emergency food ration distribution (photo courtesy of Sano Paila)