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Nepal Earthquake

On April 25, 2015, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake occurred in Nepal, in an area between the capital city of Kathmandu and the city of Pokhara.

Tremors and aftershocks were felt across the region in India, Bangladesh, Tibet and on Mount Everest. A second earthquake occurred on May 12, 2015. This event was a 7.3 magnitude quake. The epicenter of the May 12 earthquake was about 50 miles east of Kathmandu, near the Nepal-China border.

Estimates indicate that about 9,000 people died in the April 25 earthquake. About 6.2 million people live within 100 kilometers of the epicenter.

More than a year later, small aftershocks still occur in the affected areas.

Sources for this disaster profile include CNN News, BBC News, United Nations agencies, USAID, and reporting iNGOs. Video courtesy of CNN News.

(Photo source: BBC)


On April 25, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake occurred in Nepal, in an area between the capitol city of Kathmandu and the city of Pokhara. Tremors and aftershocks were felt across the region in India, Bangladesh, Tibet and on Mount Everest. A second earthquake occurred on May 12. This event was a 7.3 magnitude quake. The epicenter of the May 12 earthquake was about 50 miles east of Kathmandu, near the Nepal-China border.

Estimates indicate that about 9,000 people died in the April 25 earthquake. About 6.2 million people live within 100 kilometers of the epicenter.

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Facts and stats
From the New York Times, satellite image by NASA/U.S.G.S. Landsat via Google Earth
  • Nepal straddles the Himalayas between northern India and China and is home to Mt. Everest, the world’s tallest mountain. It rises steeply from the Ganges River Basin in India and contains high fertile valleys and eight of the world’s 14 highest peaks.
  • About 27.8 million people live in Nepal.
  • Nepal is one of the world’s poorest countries, more than 80 percent of the population depends on agriculture. An estimated 25 percent of the people live in poverty.
  • Approximately 8,000 schools were destroyed in the earthquake.
  • At least 868,000 homes were destroyed or damaged. Of those, more than 600,000 homes were destroyed.
  • More than 350 aftershocks have occurred in the disaster area.
  • More than 3,000 landslides have occurred in the disaster area since the April earthquake.
Earthquake damage in the village of Bolgaon (photo by Lucy Beck, CARE)
Water and Sanitation

There is a significant need to rebuild damaged water and toilet facilities.


More than 600,000 homes were destroyed. About 300,000 homes were damaged. Rebuilding permanent homes was delayed by significant and continuing aftershocks following the earthquakes, by a several month border blockade, and logistical challenges.


The food supply was significantly interrupted. Due to the interruption to the crop cycle and damage to livestock, food security is expected to be a significant need into the long-term.

Medical care

Many people remain far from medical care and supplies.

As with most disasters, experts recommend cash donations. They allow on-the-ground agencies to direct funds to the most significant area of need, support economic recovery and ensure donation management does not detract from disaster recovery needs.

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Recovery updates

If you are a responding NGO or a donor, please send updates on how you are working on recovery from this disaster to Tanya Gulliver-Garcia.

Donor recommendations

If you are a donor looking for recommendations on how to help with disaster recovery, please email Regine A. Webster.

Philanthropic and government support


3M Company Contributions Program, $150,000 to unspecified recipients.

AARP Foundation, $225,000 to unspecified recipients.

Abbott Fund, $200,000 to CARE, World Food Program, and Americares.

Abbott Laboratories Corporate Giving Program, $100,000 to unspecified recipient for healthcare.

Airbus Corporate Foundation, $133,753 to International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

Allianz SE, $57,000 to SOS Children’s Villages.

Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundation, $1 million to unspecified recipients for Nepal earthquake relief.

American Express Company Contributions Program, $200,000 to American Red Cross, Save the Children and the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund in India.

ARAMARK Corporation Contributions Program, $100,000 to American Red Cross.

Archer Daniels Midland Company Contributions Program, $50,000 to American Red Cross.

Aster DM Foundation, $393,860 to Nepal Prime Minister’s Relief Fund.

BAPS Development, Inc., $30,000 to UNICEF, $25,000 to Direct Relief, $25,000 to One Heart World-Wide, $30,000 to World Food Program, and $25,000 to unspecified recipients.

Bell has donated $182,000 to the Canadian Red Cross to support relief efforts in Nepal.

Bezos Family Foundation, $200,000 to Save the Children.

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, $700,000 to Oxfam America and $300,000 to other recipients for Nepal earthquake relief.

BMG LABTECH, $11,383 to Caritas Germany.

BMO Financial Group has donated $20,500 to Canadian Red Cross.

Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation, Inc., $100,000 to AmeriCares and Project Hope.

Bungie, Inc., $400,000 to unspecified recipients.

CAFOD, $80,000 to unspecified recipients.

Canon has donated $42,000 for earthquake victim relief.

Carnival Australia, $117,000 to Save the Children.

Carnival Corporation, $200,000 to Mercy Corps, Disaster Emergency Committee and Save the Children.

Cathay Pacific Airways Limited Corporate Giving Program, $219,220 to UNICEF.

CH2M HILL Companies Contributions Programs, $10,000 to American Red Cross.

China Women’s Development Foundation, $173,000 to unspecified recipients.

CIBC has made a $41,000 donation to the Canadian Red Cross.

Cisco Systems Foundation, $1 million to match up to $1 million in employee donations to be allocated to Nepal earthquake relief.

Columbia Sportswear Company has donated $50,000 to Mercy Corps, OXFAM, and UNICEF.

Community Chest of Korea National Office, $350,000 to the International Organization for Migration.

Continental AG Corporate Giving Program, $55,000 to unspecified recipients.

Dangote Foundation, $1 million to the Government of Nepal.

Dow Chemical Company Contributions Program, $50,000 to Habitat for Humanity and $50,000 to Jimmy Carter Work Project.

Economical Insurance has donated $10,000 to the Canadian Red Cross relief efforts.

EXNESS Group, $28,000 to Care.

Facebook has opened a user match option up to $2 million for organizations working to provide relief.  Facebook users have donated $15 million to date. Facebook is donating the funds to International Medical Corps.

Fast Retailing Co. Ltd. Corporate Giving Program, $50,000 to U.S. Fund for UNICEF.

FedEx Corporation Contributions Program, $250,000 to American Red Cross National Headquarters, $50,000 to Salvation Army, and $700,000 to unspecified recipients.

Feizy Rugs, $15,000 to the Global Fund for Children.

Fidelity Charitable Gift Fund, $5 million to unspecified recipients.

Ford Foundation, $100,000 to Save the Children, $150,000 to Tewa for Support, $200,000 to The Asia Foundation.

Ford Motor Company Fund, $100,000 to Global Giving and $100,000 to Habitat for Humanity.

General Mills Foundation, $50,000 to CARE USA, and $25,000 to American Red Cross National Headquarters.

General Motors Foundation, $100,000 to American Red Cross and World Food Program and $50,000 to the India Prime Minister Relief Fund.

GlaxoSmithKline Corporate Giving Program, $75,646 to unspecified recipients. has committed $1 million to response efforts and an additional $500,000 in an employee match program.

GoFundMe, $250,000 to AmeriCares.

Gulf Earth Moving, $11,000 to Qatar Red Crescent.

H & M Hennes and Mauritz AB, $100,000 to Save the Children.

Halyard Health, Inc., $400,000 in donated medical supplies to MedShare.

HCA Corporate Giving Program, $250,000 to Doctors Without Borders, $250,000 to MedShare International, $250,000 to American Red Cross.

Henry Schein, Inc. Corporate Giving Program, $500,000 in medical supplies to unspecified recipients.

HNA Group Co. Ltd, $1 million to Hainan Liberation Commonwealth Foundation.

Honda Motor Co. Contributions Program, $168,000 to unspecified recipients for Nepal relief.

Hudson’s Bay Company Corporate Giving Program, $41,000 to Canadian Red Cross Society.

Hunter Douglas, Inc. Contributions Program, $200,000 to Habitat for Humanity.

Hyundai Motor Company, $300,000 to Nepal Red Cross.

IDeA Foundation, $100,000 to UNICEF.

Inditex, $569,125 to International Red Cross, $569,125 to Oxfam, and $227,650 to unspecified recipients.

Initiatives for Development of Armenia, $10,000 to UNICEF.

International Triathlon Union, $10,520 Nepal Triathlon Union.

Intrepid Foundation has donated $78,000 to Plan International.

JCB Corporate Giving Program, $1.25 million to unspecified recipients.

Jewelers for Children, $25,000 to Save the Children.

KAS Rugs, $20,000 to unspecified recipients.

Kellogg’s has donated $200,000 to the United Nation’s affiliated World Food Program, for disaster relief efforts in Nepal.

Kingfisher PLC, $39,400 to UNICEF UK.

Koninklijke DSM N.V., $50,000 to World Food Program and up to $100,000 to match employee contributions.

Kohl’s Corporation Contributions Program, $50,000 to American Red Cross.

Lifeway Foods, Inc. has donated $25,000 to the World Food Program.

Linde AG, $34,148 to International Red Cross.

Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc. Corporate Giving Program, $50,000 to the American Red Cross.

MAXIMUS Foundation, $29,000 to Project HOPE.

MetLife Foundation has donated $250,000 to the International Medical Corps for response efforts.

Microsoft Corporation Contributions Program, $1 million to unspecified recipients for Nepal earthquake relief.

Mitsubishi Electric Corporation Contributions Program, $42,000 to Japan Platform.

MoneyGram International has donated $25,000 to AmeriCares.

National Bank of Canada Corp Giving Program, $12,000 to the Canadian Red Cross.

Nepal Water and Energy Development Company Private Limited, $400,000 to unspecified recipients, $50,000 to Government of Nepal.

New York Life Insurance Company Contributions Program, $50,000 to Save the Children.

Nikon Corporation Contributions Program, $42,000 to the Japanese Red Cross.

Nissan Motor Company Contributions Program, $83,900 to World Food Program.

Northern Trust Corporation Contributions Program, $50,00, to the American Red Cross.

Pala Casino Resort and Spa, $10,000 to the American Red Cross.

Panasonic Corporation has donated $42,000 to Japan Platform for Nepal relief and $9,000 to unspecified recipients.

Philadelphia Insurance Companies Contributions Program, $25,000 to the American Red Cross.

Planned Systems International, Inc., $11,500 to the American Red Cross.

Procter and Gamble Company Contributions Program, $500,000 to unspecified recipients.

QDVC, $20,872 to Qatar Red Crescent.

QUALCOMM Incorporated Corporate Giving Program, $100,000 to Mercy Corps.

Rahmatan Lil ‘Alamin Foundation Ltd., $178,000 to Mercy Relief.

RBC Foundation, $62,000 to the Canadian Red Cross.

Research and Markets, $56,000 to UNICEF and Doctors Without Borders.

Scotiabank Corporate Giving Program, $41,000 to the Canadian Red Cross.

Sealed Air Corporation Contributions Program, $25,000 to the American Red Cross.

SEGA Corporation, $17,000 to the Japanese Red Cross.

Shaw Communications Corporate Giving Program, $82,000 to the Canadian Red Cross.

Shenzhen Gionee Communication Equipment Co., $78,670 to Government of Nepal.

Simpson Strong-Tie Company, Inc., $10,000 to unspecified recipients.

Starbucks Foundation, $150,000 to American Red Cross.

Stavros Niarchos Foundation, $500,000 to Oxfam GB, International Federation of Red Cross.

Stichting IEKA Foundation, $3.4 million to unspecified recipients.

Sun Life Financial Inc. Corporate Giving Program, $41,1000 to Canadian Red Cross Society.

Sutter Health, $250,000 to the American Red Cross and $250,000 to the International Medical Corps.

Swiscom Ltd., $164,000 to Swiss Solidarity.

Taiwan Soka Association, $32,000 to unspecified recipients for Nepal relief.

Tangerine Bank, $50,000 to Canadian Red Cross.

TD Bank Group had donated $50,000 to the Red Cross.

The Air Products Foundation, $25,000 to the American Red Cross.

The JPMorgan Chase Foundation, $725,000 to unspecified recipients for Nepal relief.

The Prem Rawat Foundation, $150,000 to Premsagar Foundation Nepal.

The Toronto-Dominion Bank Corporate Giving Program, $41,000 to the Canadian Red Cross.

The Vodafone Foundation, $154,000 to Disasters Emergency Committee for relief work in Nepal.

Toyota Motor Corporation and Toyota Tsusho Corporation have made a combined donation of 10 million yen, or about $84,000 USD. This will be provided through Japan Platform, a emergency humanitarian aid organization, to Nepal relief efforts.

Trinity Broadcasting Network, $100,000 to Samaritan’s Purse.

Ubisoft Montreal, $83,000 to Canadian Red Cross.

United Airlines has committed $50,000 through an employee and customer match program. Funds will go to the American Red Cross, Americares, Airline and Operation USA.

United Supermarkets, Inc. Corporate Giving Program, $10,000 to unspecified recipient.

UPS has committed $200,000 in emergency funding to CARE ($25,000), the U.N. World Food Program ($25,000), and UNHCR ($150,000) to provide emergency aid including sheltering supplies, lanterns, tarps, blankets, jerry cans and comfort kits. The Logistics Emergency Team is on standby awaiting deployment instructions from the Global Logistics Cluster.

USANA True Health Foundation, $50,000 to International Relief Teams, $41,800 to Japan Platform, $12,000 to unspecified recipients.

Verizon is matching employee relief donations, up to $1,000 per employee.

Visa has donated $100,000 to the Red Cross. Visa will also double-match employee donations to a set of humanitarian groups through May 31.

Wal-Mart Foundation, $100,000 to International Medical Corps, and $150,000 to American Red Cross National Headquarters.

Walt Disney Company Contributions Program, $1 million to unspecified recipients.

Western Union Foundation, $200,000 to unspecified recipients.

Yahoo Employee Foundation, $75,000 to American Red Cross National Headquarters.

YG Entertainment Company, Ltd., $91,500 to UNICEF Korea.

NGO Response

International nongovernmental organizations in the area have transitioned from immediate relief efforts to long-term recovery plans and rebuilding.

Action Against Hunger is responding with food relief, along with water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) support as part of their responsibilities in the global WASH cluster.

ActionAid is responding with relief items (food, clothes, drinking water, and shelter support), support to health facilities and the provision of trauma support.

All Hands Volunteers has launched a project to rebuild 15 schools in Nepal that were completely destroyed and rehabilitate other schools that were damaged by the earthquake. The project, in partnership with Room to Read, will provide access to education for more than 5,000 children, and is one of several programs All Hands is operating in earthquake-affected areas.

American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee is providing relief items (food, shelter supplies, drinking water) as well as partnering with the Israeli Defense Forces’ field hospital through the provision of equipment. JDC is also working with its partners in Nepal to coordinate further aid.

American Red Cross has committed $1 million to date in response operations and is working with the Nepal Red Cross and International Red Cross network to coordinate support.

AmeriCares is working to support the World Health Organization appeal to meet health needs during the current fuel shortage. One shipment has already been sent to Nepal, containing 6,500 courses of antibiotics and four Interagency Emergency Health Kits, with medicine and supplies to serve 40,000 people for three months.  A second shipment of more than $1 million in medical supplies and medicines has been organized and a third is planned.

Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation is shipping one ton of medical supplies, as well as sending a team of medical volunteers to provide medical assistance and distribute food and relief materials in Kathmandu.

Care staff is on the ground, working to provide relief in the areas of shelter, food, water and hygiene. Care has operated numerous programs in Nepal since 1978 and through those programs will work to boost rebuilding efforts in numerous communities.

Catholic Relief Services is working with Caritas Nepal with an initial goal of helping 10,000 families with emergency shelter, blankets, water treatment kits, and hygiene kits. Given the scale of the disaster, the number receiving help is expected to rise as staff and partners are able to assess the situation.

Christian Aid is responding with medical care and water and hygiene supplies.  To date, Christian Aid has distributed relief supplies to 6,400 households.

Concern Worldwide has worked in Nepal since 2006, focusing on livelihoods, water and sanitation and nutrition. The organization is currently reaching out to partner organizations on the ground to coordinate response efforts.

Direct Relief has supported several Nepal- and regionally-based hospitals, delivery centers, midwifery programs on an ongoing basis and is currently working with those partners to coordinate response in the area.

Disaster Pyschiatry Outreach is working to provide mental and trauma aid to disaster victims.

Doctors of the World has doctors, along with medicine and supplies to the area.

Educate the Children will work to rebuild schools in Nepal.

Habitat for Humanity has launched it’s long-term Build Nepal strategy to support earthquake-affected families with safe and decent housing. Habitat for Humanity has worked in Nepal since 1997, and will implement this strategy under four umbrellas: Social Mobilization (HFH Nepal will work with local partners to engage individuals, families and entire communities in the Participatory Approach for Safe Shelter Awareness); Technical Assistance (support will include both the reconstruction of fully damaged houses and retrofitting of partially damaged houses); Tiered Assistance (non-financial support for the most vulnerable households to help them to begin participating in income generating activities, so that they may build their own capacity); and Market Development (a survey in disaster-affected areas to better understand the ability of households to access safe shelter, building materials, construction labor, other service providers and government grants, as well as housing nance from MFIs and commercial banks).

Handicap International has a 50-person team who responded to the earthquake early on April 25, helping the most vulnerable in two main hospitals in Kathmandu. Handicap International staff is providing post-surgery rehabilitation care in the hospitals, and offering aid to people with injuries in collaboration with orthopedic surgeons. Handicap International is also providing medical equipment, such as wheelchairs, crutches, walkers and splints. Rehabilitation experts are currently in Gurkha and Pokhara to evaluate needs.

Headwaters Relief Organization has a team working in Sindupalchok District in partnership with All Hands, working with children, building transitional housing, and working on clearing debris. Headwaters will also present Nepal Quake, an illustrated children’s book created by Headwaters volunteers. Written in English and Nepali, the book explains what an earthquake is and how it can affect children, family, and community. The book, along with a teacher’s guide, will be distributed to thousands of children and teachers. With a specialty in providing mental health support, Headwaters will be training responders and care providers in addressing compassion fatigue and other mental health issues.

Heart to Heart International has deployed an advance team, followed by a medical team to provide primary care for victims of the earthquake.  In addition, HHI is working with partners to assemble medicine, medical equipment, and other supplies to airlift to Nepal in the coming days and weeks.

Heifer International is providing temporary shelter, food, and water for communities in need. Heifer International will provide assistance in Dhading and Nuwakot first and then will assess damage in other districts. They will work long-term to rebuild communities and provide livestock and related training.

Himalayan Cataract Project partners are working to treat patients with eye trauma and other injuries.

Humane Society International has a disaster response team that will cooperate with Animal Welfare Network Nepal to rescue and provide temporary shelter for animals in need and to rent and outfit animal sheltering facilities and rescue vehicles.

International Medical Corps is responding with medical teams to assist hospitals and clinics in treating those injured as well as provide routine medical care as needed. Currently, the organization has mobile medical units operating in the Gorkha, Shading, and Khulla Manch districts in west Nepal. IMC teams are also distributing medicine, hygiene kids and water purification tablets in the disaster area.

International Red Cross has activated its person finder for separated family members. The IRC is currently coordinating relief efforts with Nepal Red Cross.

International Relief Teams is working with partners to provide emergency medicines and other relief supplies for earthquake victims in Nepal. An initial air shipment will be delivered to onsite partners on April 30. Additional shipments are being planned, as requested from the field.

InterNews has teams on the ground working to provide timely information coordinated among communities, responders and local media in local language.

IsraAid is sending an emergency relief team to Nepal to assist with relief efforts, distribute emergency supplies, and provide medical services.

Lutheran World Relief has sent blankets, personal care kits and water filtration units, food packs, and tent and tarp kits. LWR will be responding through long-term partner COPPADES and additional responses include cash transfers and NFI distribution. LWR is also conducting long-term assessments to address shelter, food, and livelihood recovery.

Medical Teams International is sending medical teams west of Kathmandu, in Dhading District, to meet health and response needs.

Mercy Corps has teams in the area distributing emergency supply kits with water, clothing, cooking utensils, towels, and hygiene supplies. Mercy Corps will also be distributing shelter kits and providing cash transfers to families in need.

Oxfam has an initial relief goal of assisting 350,000 people affected by the earthquake. Oxfam is working in four open-air sites in the Kathmandu Valley, delivering water and building toilets. Over the coming days, the organization plans to work with other agencies to provide clean water to 16 open-air sites, along with food and shelter assistance.

Plan International USA has deployed eight teams to the disaster area. Plan aims to support hundreds of households, whose homes have either completely collapsed or have been extensively damaged and are no longer in livable condition, in and around 35 peripheral settlements in Kathmandu valley. Additionally, the organization will assist approximately 7,000 families with immediate aid packages. PLAN has a long-time presence in Nepal, with staff and programs in the country since 1978.

Project C.U.R.E.  is coordinating the delivery of 20-foot and 40-foot containers of medical supplies into Nepal.

Project HOPE has launched a two year project in partnership with the Nepal Public Health Foundation that is focused on child and maternal health, hygiene and nutrition in Makawanpur District.

Salvation Army has responded with two Salvation Army officers who reside in Nepal, 15 deployed international personnel, and more than 50 local and international volunteers. In partnership with Mountain Child, Child Heaven, Child Nepal, Powerful Hands, and Volunteers Initiative Nepal (VIN), The Salvation Army relief team has so far assisted more than 100,000 individuals affected by the earthquakes through the distribution of food, tarps, tents, quilts, tools, hygiene items, cleaning supplies, and educational stationary.

Save the Children Save the Children has been working in Nepal since 1976. Currently, Save is operating long-term recovery programs in the areas of shelter, WASH, education, protection, livelihoods, and health in Nepal.

Shakti Samuha is a local Nepali NGO that works with the survivors of human trafficking. The organization is working to rebuild a safe home in Sindhupalchowk that was damaged by the earthquake, as well as mount an advocacy campaign to combat the greater risk of trafficking for those left particularly vulnerable by the disaster’s damage.

U.S. Fund for UNICEF and partners are planning to reach approximately 2,800,000 children in 35 affected districts, focusing on water and sanitation, protection, health, and nutrition. UNICEF is distributing pre-positioned emergency supplies, and UNICEF cargo flights carrying 120 tons of humanitarian supplies are being prepared for airlift to Nepal.  UNICEF is providing tents to be used at hospitals to assist the large number of injured people; water-trucking services to all 16 camps across Kathmandu Valley, and oral rehydration salts and zinc to treat diarrhea.

WaterAid America is providing relief through the distribution of safe water, water purification tablets, emergency sanitation measures and hygiene kits. In addition to the hard-hit Gorkha district, WaterAid has water, sanitation, and hygiene projects in 27 districts across the country. WaterAid is further planning for the long-term rebuilding of water and sanitation services that will be needed.

World Concern responded with water, shelter, food and medical supplies.

World Food Program provided food for more than 1.4 million people (an approximate $116.5 million). In addition to food distributions, as the lead of the humanitarian community’s Logistics Cluster, WFP also provided logistics support for the entire aid operation in Nepal.

World Vision  is responding by providing tarps and blankets in Bhaktapur.  Field assessments in the affected districts are ongoing. Initially, World Vision is targeting over 100,000 people with emergency supplies such as shelter, water, non-food items, education, health and the establishment of child-friendly spaces. Targeted areas will include some of the most affected districts, including Gorkha, Lamjung, Bakhtapur and Kathmandu Valley. World Vision Nepal has 200 staff on the ground, and other disaster experts have flown in to provide technical and management support. World Vision has had a development presence in Nepal since 2001.

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