Update from Laxmi

An update from Laxmi Tamang of Midwifery Society of Nepal, as we work together with GOP and One Heart World Wide on building labor and delivery tents in the remote regions of Nepal where the health posts were destroyed by the earthquake.

Yesterday, Eric Warren Moffet and myself had second round meeting with One Heart World Wide who works for saving lives at birth with the mission to decrease maternal and neonatal (newborn) mortality/death and morbidity/illness in remote rural areas of Nepal. We had very productive meeting for the collaborative action in saving the lives of mothers and babies at birth in earthquake affected districts mainly in Dhading and Sindhupalchowk. The main purpose of our meeting was to ensure that not to repeat/duplicate our work and to reach to maximum health facilities in limited resources in setting up birthing tents where birthing centres have been damaged and destroyed in the districts due to recent earthquakes.

We were quite impressed with the birthing tents that they have been setting up in the earthquake damaged birthing centre sites in the districts. To improve it we have given further inputs to them in our first round meeting. Our second round meeting was extremely fruitful because we, HAND, GOP, MIDSON and One Heart World Wide decided to move on collaboratively to help to set up quality useful birthing tents to the District Health Office/Ministry of Health and Population so that our nurse-midwives feel comfortable to assist birth and also pregnant mothers and their family feel ease in access to quality birthing service.

In the first meeting last week, Brian Smith and Amber Shields from HAND (Helping Assist Nepal's Disabled) and Eric from Global Orphan Prevention (GOP) and myself from Midwifery Society of Nepal attended the meeting and yesterday Eric, myself and Uttam Bhlon Lama from Clean Village Microfinance Bittiya Sanstha that works in 18 mountainous districts attended the meeting.

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Thank you Amber!!!!!

A thank you to Amber from Brian Smith for her contributions to HAND and the Nepali people over the past few weeks...

I want to give a HUGE thank you to Amber Shields for her service here to the earthquake survivors here in Nepal as HAND's first volunteer labor and delivery nurse! Amber, you have forever touched the lives of the Nepali people that you loved on, cared for, trained, and became life-long friends with. As your brother, I was filled with pride and respect as you came alongside us giving 110% day after day, in remote and dangerous regions. I can only count down the days until we serve together again, in both Honduras, and Nepal. The world is a better place because you are here Amber. Thank you!

Posted by Matt E for Brian Smith. Please consider a tax free donation to HAND

Report on the Sindapolchok mission

The following is a report from Amber on the most recent HAND mission


Most amazing trip. The bumpiest ride I've ever had. Left early yesterday to head to Ichok and Solsing village. 4 hour drive to put up the birth tents. 1st we stopped at a clinic on the way. They're over whelmed. Seeing 250 patients a day. 2 Dr's, 1 health assistant. Also a labor and delivery. I got to see it and the midwife told me her delivery light was broken. We continued on to postpartum (in a tent). I was asking the midwife if she'd ever thought to use a head lamp. She hadn't. So I ran to the jeep and grabbed mine. I took it to her showed her how to use it then continued on the tour. Next thing I know, Laxmi Tamang got me to tell me there was a quick delivery. She got to use the light and was so happy! Thanks to my cousin John Alden for the idea! Then we continued onto put up the birth tents. After we got most of it done we had to head up the mountain. 2 hours drive on the worst road I've ever been on. Long story short, one truck took 4 hours. In the morning we started to dig the toilets. We showed them how do it and left the supplies for 9 more. Laxmi and I hiked up about 1000 vertical feet (they told us just a small walk) to drop off more birth equipment. Had tea and walked back down to the rest of the team. Then drove to the school where our other car was and found out the clutch went out. Curtis Gt had to drive due to the driver being too scared. Back down to the lower village to finish the birth tents while the other jeep got fixed. Another 3 hours drive and we arrived. 

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Hand departs in a few hours on the next mission

We are preparing to head out on our next two day mission. This will be another joint mission between HAND, GOP and MIDSON.

We have added several new team members. New team members are Sarah Abou Jaoudeh from Lebanon, and Ian Bellows from Seattle. Sarah and Ian will be working together to film a documentary on our Nepal earthquake relief work. We also have Mingmar Tamang as a new team member. Mingmar will be our local man who has been huge for helping his home village.

Returning members are myself, Curtis Gt Amber ShieldsLaxmi Tamang Robin KeunenTendi Sherpa and Eric Warren Moffet

Our mission is to Sindalphulchowk, in the remote VDC of Ichowk. We will build a new labor and delivery clinic (tents), provide 30 birthing kits, provide clean water solutions because of donated supplies from Operation Blessing International, and build new public toilets to replace all of those destroyed in the earthquake. It will take us about 7 hours in a Land Cruiser to reach the upper VDC area, on treacherous roads. If all goes well, we will be back Thursday late evening. This will be my 5th remote earthquake relief mission.

We appreciate everyone's donations, prayer and support.

Posted by Matt E for Brian Smith. Please consider a tax free donation to HAND

More information on the Sindapolchok trip that leaves tomorrow

The following is an email from Brian with the details of the Sindapolchok trip scheduled for Wed.

Our plan is to leave fairly early on Wednesday morning, and return late evening on Thursday.  We are currently working on taking two Land Rovers which will pick us up at the flat. We expect the drive to take 5 hours each way.  Three hours will be on paved roads, the final two hours are really rough 4x4 roads.  The upper VDC takes an additional two hours to reach after reaching the lower VDC.  One team will work on the birthing tents in the lower VDC, while the second team continues to the upper to build and dig out public toilets.  We will all sleep in the upper VDC area about 8000 feet in elevation.

 Our mission plan is to take 10 toilet pieces to build public toilets in the Ichoke VDC, two labor and delivery tents and enough water purification to get them through the monsoon.  I am currently working on water purification for the entire Sindhapalchowk region, but that part will be stage two.  I am also working with an agriculture specialist to put together a long-term agriculture sustainability project which will bring the VDC into economic stability.  That part will be a second trip as well, after collecting more data from this trip.

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A Picture of the HAND Team

Here is a picture of most of the HAND team that has been working in Nepal. This has been an international effort to minister to the Nepali people. More are added to the team and our important work every day. If you have not done so, we encourage you to start with the very first NEWS feed post and read all that has occurred during this trip. We also want to say thank you, because our work would not be possible without the love and support we have received from so many. Thank you for your efforts at home on our behalf.

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More from the most recent trip to Rautbesi


Update from Laxmi...

Came to know that in this area Nepali congress two powerful leaders, Mr. Arjun Narsingh KC's ancestor house is situated and Mr. Ram Saran Mahat, present Finance Minister is elected in the last election. BUT wonder WHY this area is so much backward like Karnali region of Nepal. 

In our last visit on 12 May we noticed that from the old birthing tent water was dribbling because it was torn, therefore HAND team members,  Brian Smith and Curtis decided to replace it with new birth tent. Thus accordingly we went there again on 29 May along with other team members of HAND, namely Tendi Sherpa, Amber Shields, Robin, Eric and else to distribute food items and set up birthing tent.  

Two birthing tents set up and given clear instruction to the health workers, Incharge and Auxiliary Nurse-Midwife and Health Facility Management Committee's members including villagers for its proper use and protect it. I informed them that Midwifery Society of Nepal (MIDSON) will monitor and make follow up time-to-time to ensure its proper use and also support them accordingly in whatever way possible in the days to come. 

Also, demand for supplies and equipments are collected by Amber Shields from Auxiliary Nurse-Midwife to provide quality midwifery/maternity care and in MIDSON members next visit it will be supplied. We discussed and planned with health workers, villagers and health facility management committee's members to make this birthing centre as a model in serving rural and remote needy women of 3 Village Development Committees, Rautbesi, Gaukharka and Betini

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Successful trip to Rautbesi

The following are two reports from Amber and Tendi on the most recent trip to Rautbesi. It was a very successful trip

Tendi Sherpa

Just got home after an adventurous relief missions to the Rautbesi VDC of Nuwakot district. Our team of HAND been up this village yesterday and we distributed rice, lentils, salts and oils to the peoples of 9 different villages in Rautbesi VDC, and plus we set up two big birthing tents as the hospital was badly damaged by the earthquake which receives and treats thousands of patients every year. 
Thanks to whole HAND team for wonderful team work.

Amber Shields

The start of our trip yesterday started at 7am. We loaded up and headed out. It was a very long trip. We had to take some more nurses up to Nuwakot. They got the birth room set up there which took many hours. By the time we got there it was getting late. We dropped off 120 bags of 30kg bags of rice. We also dropped off oil, salt, and Dal. Fed 9 wards that are within the VDC, 240 families. Then set up the birth tents. The towns people fed us a great dinner. During the night a major monsoon hit during the middle of the night. Brian and I were in his tent so we slept all night and stayed dry. The others got wet and had to get up to dig trenches. In the morning we found the town midwife who has done 200 deliveries in the past 2 years. We gave her the birth kits (50 of them), and other supplies. Got a list of other items she needs. Will send it up next week. They're using what we did in there village as a model of what to do in other remote regions. We're planning on another trip this week.

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2 day trip to Rautbesi

Email from Brian Smith, Executive Director of HAND

The HAND/Global Orphan Prevention/ Midwifery Society of Nepal team is heading out early in the morning to Rautbesi in the Nuwakot Region. We are taking HAND labor and delivery nurse Amber Shields, Curtis Gt, Eric Warren Moffet, Robin Keunen, Tendi Sherpa, Laxmi, two Nepali nurses and myself back to the devastated and remote regions. Our mission will be to deliver 8000 lbs of rice, oil, lentils and salt, as well as set up a labor and delivery clinic in a tent. Monsoon is fast approaching. Soon these regions will be cut off from the outside world for the next three months.

This is our second mission to this remote region. It is another dangerous mission. We will be gone for two days. We appreciate everyone's prayers as we serve the earthquake stricken people of Nuwakot Nepal.


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Bringing nurses supplies in remote regions

The following is a post by Amber Shields, HAND Volunteer, and nurse.

Today was a busy day. Off to the mountains (hills to the Nepali) to drop off the nurses for the birth center. It was about 5 hours drive one way. We rode in the back of the truck. Stopped for lunch then continued on. Absolute destruction. We made it up there and a meeting was in progress with many different groups to bring info together to see how to help the people of that region. They are some of the hardest hit. Unloaded the items for the nurses, then got them settled. While we were doing that our hired driver left without Laxmi and me. We had to walk down to the village to catch a minibus. Two of them, a big local bus and then a motorbike ride later I arrived back at our flat which has become HAND central for our trip thanks to Curtis.

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