Sometimes numbers can tell a deeper story. Here are some key facts and figures from the Nepal Earthquakes. All the data comes from the UN Office for the coordination of Humanitarian Affairs and are accurate as of mid-May 2015.

The Damage

Number of people killed: 8,617

Number of people injured: 16,808

Number of people displaced: 2.8 million

Number of people affected: 5.6 million

Number of people in need of food assistance: More than 1 million

Number of hospitals damaged: 26

Number of houses destroyed: over 473,000

The Response

There are some 330 humanitarian agencies are implementing some 2,200 humanitarian activities.  The United Nations and humanitarian relief organizations have requested $432 million in emergency funds to mount a robust relief effort. So far, $88.2 million has been received. The largest donors to the relief effort are the United Kingdom ($31 million); China ($22 million); Norway ($19 million); and the USA ($15 million, but if you also count total contributions of the USA to the search and rescue operation and relief efforts, including the contributions of the Department of Defense, the figure is closer to $34 million  $47m) .

The Context

An earthquake in Katmandu valley was always going to be a deadly occurrence. The population of Katmandu has swelled in recent years as migrants from the countryside move to the city to find jobs. So what can be done to make a place that is vulnerable to natural disasters more “resilient?” In a recent episode of Global Dispatches Podcast, I  speak with Jo Scheuer of the United Nations Development Program who offers an excellent 20 minute summary of the situation in Nepal and offers important recommendations of what countries and communities can do to help mitigate their risk to natural disaster. Have a listen!

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