I Have Gained Knowledge on Disaster

It's a break time. Weather is too hot. In a school, situated at a remote hill of Kavre district in central Nepal Nepal, 15 years old Ritu Tamang seats beneath a tree in the school premises to protect her from sunlight. She shares the difficulties to stay in a CGI Sheet-roofed classroom for a whole day in summer as she wipes the sweat off her face.

The building of Sharada Secondary School where Ritu studies, collapsed during the devastating earthquake of 2015. As aftershocks continued for several days and months, saving the life was a priority for everyone. The school was closed for several months. Ritu's family was also living in a temporary tent.

"Almost 3 years later, we are shifting to a new building, it will be easier for us to continue study once we shift there," Ritu says.

However, Ritu knows that shifting to the new building only is not the solution they are prone to many forms of disaster in the school.

"After I experienced the earthquake for the first time, I thought disaster means only the earthquake" she shares, "but I realized now earthquake only is not the disaster. Disaster is in our daily life. Since there are jungles and big trees in our villages and schools, we are in the high risk of lightning during each rainy season. There are terraces and slopes on way to the school where children are at high risk of falling down."

She pointed out construction materials scattered in the school premises and said that students, especially, little children are in high risk of getting hurt from the construction materials.

According to her, she did not only learn about different forms of disasters but also learned about preparedness to face such a disaster in the last one year.

She participated in the games, multimedia show, speech competition, easy writing on the theme of disaster through the BURDAN project implemented by ADRA Nepal with the local partnership of Nangshal Association Nepal with financial assistance from ADRA International.

“Last one year remained eye-opening for me as I have also understood how to get prepared against disaster such as keeping myself safe during earthquake, installing earthing to get protected from lightning, properly managing construction materials, constructing fences in the terrace to protect children from falling down,” she shares.

“I also share my knowledge to my family and they also curiously listen to me," Ritu feels that knowledge on disaster would greatly help her to save life and help others during disaster and hazards as she has gained knowledge and confidence through the project.