235 families receive new shelter in Koshi
Under the relief, recovery and rehabilitation assistance to those households affected by the August 2008 Koshi flood, rapid recovery works are in progress through the UNDP supported Koshi Early Recovery Programme (KERP). The three affected Village Development Committees —Shripur, Haripur and Paschim Kusaha have witnessed labour intensive infrastructure rehabilitation, vocational/skill trainings and development of micro-enterprises — targeted especially towards women, ethnic minorities and socially excluded groups.
Those 7,653 households who were displaced— living in camps and with host families for 7-11 months have returned to their places of origin receiving various relief, recovery and compensation support from the Nepal Government and several humanitarian and development partners.
The Chief District Officer Mr. Ram Prasad Thapaliya says, “UNDP has supported the district authority to develop and maintain database of the disaster survivors and comprehensive compensation package distribution, convene regular monthly general coordination meetings with all the partners in association with the District Development Relief Committee of Sunsari district and implement short term programmes for flood victims.”
KERP has been able to provide its recovery assistance to 13,744 people from 2,274 households in the first phase of recovery programme and 15,997 people from 2,769 households in the second phase.
Urmila Devi 37, with her husband Bauwa Lal Mukhiya has recently shifted to the new shelter. She says, “I and my family are very happy to have found a shelter to live in and life is much better than living in the camps.”
Under the 50 days of ‘food and cash for work’ programme jointly implemented by UNDP and the World Food Programme (WFP), 7088 flood affected families benefitted directly. Also, 97 infrastructure (roads, fish ponds, culverts etc.) projects were constructed under the 50 days of ‘cash for work’ programme with the support of UNDP Quick Impact for Peace Support Initiative (QIPSI) project.
Out of the 1096 landless families identified by the District Development Relief Committee (DDRC), 235 families have already received shelter support through UNDP. The low cost bamboo houses are handed over to the beneficiaries in joint ownership of spouses in collaboration with UNHABITAT and LUMANTI (NGO). The Government has provided 2 Kathas (0.0667 hectares) of land for each house in joint ownership of their spouses. It is interesting to note that for the first time in the history of Nepal, the whole settlement have land in joint ownership. Plans are underway to resettle the remaining families .
The Local Development Officer, Mr. Prem Prasad Bhattarai says, “UNDP Micro-enterprise Development Programme has provided training and some livelihood micro grants to start income generating activities such as bee keeping, poultry, pig farming, candle making, opening tea-shops etc. There are around 716 micro-entrepreneurs continuing these small businesses as their source of livelihood.”
The support of KERP is ongoing to meet some of the challenges and difficulties identified by the communities such as lack of health and educational facilities. As part of UNDP support to the central level administration, a fortnightly joint Inter Agency Standing Committee (IASC) meets regularly covering both humanitarian as well as early recovery issues. The meeting is also attended by a Government representative. UNDP has also been participating in the Project Coordination committee (PCC) meetings on ‘Emergency Flood Damage Rehabilitation Project’ funded by the Asian Development Bank.