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Helping Nepal build a better future

Posted by: Anders Elite

CDI International President and team of volunteers to set up project providing villages with access to safe and clean water

On Saturday 25 April, Nepal suffered its most devastating earthquake in decades, measuring a massive 7.8 magnitude it severely shook the lives of many people, causing over 5,000 deaths, untold injuries and leaving many homeless. So far it is reported that eight million people are effected by the disaster.

Over the years David Arkless, President - CDI International, has been heavily involved with a number of business led initiatives to assist in emergency situations as well as helping to support sustainable development.

David has been assessing the Nepal tragedy and acknowledges that whilst any disaster recovery should be left to specialist organisations, there is a part we can all play once the disaster recovery efforts are completed as there will be a long term problems left for the community. However, we can all help with vital ongoing sustainable recovery and future development - starting in Nepal.

Speaking of the recent devastating earthquake in the Nepalese area, David says ‘In recent times, I have been connected to communities in the High-Himalaya helping with infrastructure development. The village I have been involved with the most - Ghyampasal, north of Ghorka - has been reduced to ruins due to the horrific earthquake. Where neat stone and mud houses once stood, these have now been reduced to piles of rubble’.

He continues, ‘In the Himalayas, most villages are on the top of ridges - if residents lived in the valleys, they would be flash-flooded out a couple of times a year. These communities survive high up, well away from the rivers in the deep gorges. However, there is a draw-back – they don’t have access to clean water except rainfall. The women of the villages spend many exhausting hours a day walking down the mountains to bring water up in heavy plastic containers for drinking and watering crops’.

David has been working on suitable solutions to provide water supplies to one of these communities for a number of years. David and his colleague Bill Wasilewski, Executive Vice President - Global Engineering and Technology Solutions – part of CDI Corp, were already discussing an idea for engineers at CDI to create an inexpensive gravity pump feed system to help villages gain access to running water.

David and his team now have the opportunity to turn these conversations into reality and is currently w 06 May 2015 working on a plan to fulfil this project. The proposed project will be joined by a group of volunteers who will work to together to source fund-raising, planning and implementation throughout the CDI Corporation and its partners.

David and his team of volunteers will utilise the appropriate tools required such as design equipment and our IT systems to help support this volunteer project. The most important contribution, of course will be the volunteers time and we are reaching out to you for your help. Any time and expertise offered can really make a difference in Ghyampasal - and then in other communities with similar challenges.

David knows we can make a difference in the world, so let’s do it together!

For more information on the project or to volunteer any assistance, or put forward any other ideas and suggestions, please do get in touch by emailing our project team. We will be setting up a dedicated website specifically for our volunteer programmes and projects shortly.

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