Nepal - IOM’s post-earthquake debris management programme in Chautara, Sindhupalchowk district, is further scaling up. IOM, which demolished four badly-damaged public buildings in May, now aims to demolish an additional 12 buildings by the end of June.
IOM undertakes post-earthquake debris clearance at a school in Chautara, Sindhupalchowk district. © IOM 2015
The programme to demolish unsafe public buildings and remove rubble and other debris began on 13 May at the request of the district administration. The total quantity of debris removed by IOM has now reached 10,560 cubic meters.
On 3 June, IOM completed the five-day demolition of Shree Krishna Ratna Ganga higher secondary school, the oldest and largest government school in Sindhupalchowk district. Some 1,890 cubic meters of debris were removed from the site and the demolition provided jobs for 13 local people.
The 68-year-old school was attended by 1,300 students before the devastating earthquake hit Nepal on 25 April 2015. Of some 530 government schools in the district, 95 per cent were destroyed by the two earthquakes of April 25 and May12, according to the District Education Office.
“Throughout the demolition process, we collected recyclable material, including wood, metal and CGI sheet. This was used to build a temporary learning center by a Nepali political group to build a temporary learning center on the site where the school used to be,” says Bruce Rasmussen, head of the IOM sub-office in Chautara.
“It’s great that 1,300 students who have had no education for more than a month can now go back to school,” he added.
On June 3, IOM also began clearing the roads in the main bazaar in Chautara using an excavator. The main bazaar, which consists of houses and shops, was severely damaged and also needs to be demolished, according to the Nepali government’s damage assessment conducted after the first quake.
IOM’s on-going debris management programme aims to assist the government and other humanitarian agencies by improving access to earthquake affected population.
It also engages the local population in repair and restoration activities through cash-for-work initiatives, creating employment for local people.
IOM aims to expand the debris management programme to cover more village district committees in Sindhupalchowk, as well as in other earthquake-affected districts.