Aid organisation World Vision is starting its emergency response to the devastating earthquake in Nepal. Its Australian CEO Tim Costello has flown into the Himalayan country.
World Vision reports on its website:
Aftershocks are continuing to batter the country, and the number of casualties is climbing rapidly as people dig through rubble for survivors, but find mostly bodies.
Nepal is already among the poorest and least-developed countries in the world.
Children make up half the population, and are also some of the most vulnerable people in any society as they can fall prey to abuse, exploitation and neglect. Infant and under-five mortality rates are 46 and 54 deaths per 1,000 live births, respectively.
The health of Nepalese children can be affected by exposure to infectious diseases, malnutrition, and poor hygiene and sanitation and lack of a healthy environment. Many primary school age children – mostly girls – are not at school.
Nepal is a disaster prone country and is subjected to annual floods and landslides.
Slow onset disasters related to climate change are an increasing concern, particularly in the western regions of Nepal.
World Vision has 206 staff, and runs 81 projects reaching 21,496 children in Nepal.