Winter is a tough time for millions of people still living in tents or temporary shelters after a terrible earthquake in April 2015 damaged or destroyed about 900,000 houses in Nepal. To help people cope with the cold, the Nepal Red Cross Society and partners gave 10,000 Nepali rupees (about 91 US dollars) to each of 53,000 families, covering more than 200,000 people. The cash transfer is unconditional, but monitoring shows 90 per cent of families followed Red Cross recommendations to buy winter clothes and blankets.
We visited people at home to capture how they are coping with the cold, with some help from the Red Cross.
Sarita Majhi and her baby Nabin who was born two hours before the earthquake struck. Sarita struggled to run from her home. The family assembled on a flat river bank below their house and stayed there seven days without any help from outside. After seven days they built a temporary shelter there. They invested the Nepal Red Cross Society cash grant of 10,000 Nepali rupees (about 91 US dollars) in clothes, especially for the children, and blankets. Sailendra Kharel/IFRC
Dil Bahadur BK (nickname Dillu), 52, stands outside his temporary home at Tin Ghare, in Dolalghat, in Kavre dstrict. He says his house was nice before the earthquake but that changed. Writing on the walls of his house says “Good luck, Nepal”. He plastered the inside and outside bamboo walls of his house with mud to stop the wind blowing through it. Sailendra Kharel/IFRC
A group of adults and children warm themselves around a fire made of small sticks and corn husks at Majhi Tol, in Dolalghat, in Kavre district. They have been living in this shelter after their house was severely damaged by the earthquake. There is little work here. Most men sell sand from the river and earn 500 Nepali rupees (about 5 US dollars) per day. The work is seasonal, when the rains start and the river rises, you can’t do it anymore. Sailendra Kharel/IFRC
Ramri Majhi, 72, in her shelter while her relative Chin Maya Majhi waits for her sister at Majhi Tol, in Dolalghat, in Kavre district. Her family bought blankets and warm clothes for the eight members of the family from the Nepal Red Cross cash grant. Sailendra Kharel/IFRC
Sabita BK, 24, and her daughter are busy with daily routines in Tin Ghare, in Dolalghat, in Kavre district. Her house was severely damaged during the earthquake. She used her cash grant to buy blankets, jackets and sweaters for the adults and children. Sailendra Kharel/IFRC
Ranjana BK looks after her daughter, 4, at Shahin Danda, in Dolalghat, in Kavre district. She gave half of her cash to her mother-in-law. Ranjana bought clothes for the children and nutritious biscuits and rice for the two-year-old who she says is healthy now but often sick with colds and fever. Sailendra Kharel/IFRC
Nepal Red Cross volunteers at Shahin Danda, in Dolalghat, in Kavre district. Of 85 households here, 62 received Nepal Red Cross cash grants of 10,000. Sailendra Kharel/IFRC
Maya Majhi, 40, serves breakfast to her seven members family outside their shelter at Majhi Tol, in Dolalghat, in Kavre distict. Sailendra Kharel/IFRC
Ram Bahadur Majhi and his wife Panmati Majhi sit inside their shelter at Kholsapari, in Dolalghat, in Kavre district. Ram has paralysis on the right side of his body. They sleep on a cotton quilt directly on the earth floor because he’s afraid of falling out of bed at night. She keeps him company on the floor. At night they hang tarpaulins between the corrugated iron roof and the walls. With the Nepal Red Cross cash grant, they bought blankets and quilts. Sailendra Kharel/IFRC
Bishnu Maya BK, 54 and with her granddaughter inside a temporary shelter at Tin Ghare, in Dolalghat, in Kavre district. Her house was severely damaged during the earthquake. She bought blankets, jackets and sweaters for the kids and adults. Sailendra Kharel/IFRC