In the month of August this year, I visited Dhading district of Nepal with my colleagues at ADRA Nepal where we are supporting the people affected by the earthquake that hit Nepal in 2015. As Nepal is one of our project areas, I like to keep myself updated about it. The Government of Nepal has been working for reconstruction by setting up a National Reconstruction Authority whereas different agencies such as bilateral, multilateral organization, INGOs and NGOs are supporting Nepal government to build back better.

Our small support through ADRA Nepal is to help strengthen livelihoods of earthquake affected people in Dhading district, around 4 hours drive from the capital city Kathmandu, though our project areas are a bit far from the highway. Our visit takes hours to reach by car and on foot. Our support aims to increase the community’s income by improving existing farming techniques so that they can be resilient in the future.

We visited several farmer groups and interacted with mostly women. They are happy with our work because they are feeling empowered now. They learnt how to speak for themselves. Through the training we provided, they have been able to confidently talk in the community. They are now able to express their needs.

The project is still running but most of the activities have already been completed. We built multiple use water system to ease irrigation, and also improved their agricultural techniques. Now they have improved knowledge regarding the ways to produce more agricultural products. Most of the people we worked with have already increased their income by selling vegetables after taking training and technical support from the project. I am confident that they will sustain these changes in the future as well.

Besides the happiness coming from the project’s initial impact, there are several things that I loved in Nepal. The district I visited is very green. Though the season was summer, the weather was cloudy and it eased our travel. It felt nice to meet and interact with people of Nepal. They are friendly and helpful. I always enjoy the food in Nepal. I am hoping to come back to this beautiful country and would like to thank my colleagues at ADRA Nepal and the community we work with for their love, cooperation and support.

(Rachel Donald is Program Officer Asia at ADRA Switzerland)