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FUND 2015

Surviving after the Earthquake

ASIA, Tibet

The Tibetan nomads in the Himalayas have always had a hard life. But the living conditions at 4,500 meters have gotten even worse because of climate change. Significantly lower summer rainfall and winter temperatures as low as 40 degrees below zero test the endurance and resolve of the people. Additionally, in Chinese-ruled Tibet, there has been increasing pressure on the nomads to give up their traditional way of life.

A severe earthquake with a magnitude of 7.1 on the Richter scale in the East Tibetan province of Yashu in the spring of 2010 left numerous families homeless. Fortunately, many were able to find shelter in the Children and Culture House which, thanks to the support of the German organization Aktion Lebensträume e.V., took root in this inhospitable region. Unfortunately the center itself suffered serious damage in the earthquake. Above all, the infirmary was in urgent need of repairs. The Hand in Hand -Fund was able to provide quick and straightforward emergency aid.

With the generous funds, the Lebensträume group was able to quickly renovate the infirmary and even build additional medical treatment facilities. The center also purchased a small horse, allowing the local doctor, Ngawang, to more easily make emergency visits in the more remote mountain areas.

The center continues to grow. Thanks to German aid, a number of other essential projects could be carried out. These include the construction of a five meter deep well that ensures a consistent supply of water for the inhabitants, a glass roof for a herb drying facility, as well as a heated schoolhouse where the children can be taught bilingually.

One important goal of the project is to support traditional Tibetan herbal medicine, including providing skills and knowledge about the medicinal plants and helping the local people to better market and sell their herbs.

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