Second COVID Wave Hits Nepal
In April and May of this year, India was hit with a second wave of the COVID-19 virus, worse than ever before. At its peak, over 400,000 new cases were recorded a day with 100,000 deaths in less than a month (Source and Source). Cited among the reasons for the sudden spike in cases is a wide-spread lack of resources, including doctors themselves, and a lack of medical infrastructure to care for the volume of sick people.
Because of India’s sudden uptick in COVID-19 cases, Nepali workers in India were forced to come home to a country with even less medical infrastructure and resources. Nepal was forced into a lockdown at the end of April that will end the first week of August, provided there are no further extensions. Day laborers were left without work and were unable to provide for their families. Even now, businesses can only operate within limited hours and travel on an international level is heavily restricted with mandatory lockdowns for all those who set foot within the country, regardless of vaccination status. Most districts in Nepal have over 400 cases, with some having as many as 20,000 (Source). These numbers are likely to be an inaccurate representation of how many are sick in Nepal, since testing is difficult to come by and the cost can be prohibitive to many. At this time, only one vaccine has been approved for use in Nepal, and a national lockdown has made distribution difficult.
Our partners on the ground jumped back into action, reviving the efforts from last year during the first COVID spike. They distributed basic supplies such as food, water, masks, hand sanitizer, etc. In a more community-focused effort, a church in the Tikapur area was transformed into a food bank, helping hundreds of families by distributing food to those who needed it. Thank you to those who contributed to our relief efforts, helping us support those on the front lines of this COVID spike.