Travel

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

Coca-Cola has sponsored my travel, accommodations and other expenses for my trip to Nepal. All photography is owned by Mom Spark Media unless otherwise noted.

A week ago, I (and a handful of bloggers) traveled half-way across the world to the country of Nepal, courtesy of Coca-Cola.

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

During my short visit, I witnessed various initiatives and causes that Coca-Cola is currently supporting in Nepal. I will be sharing these experiences in a series of posts here on Mom Spark.

Why I'm Going to Nepal with Coca-Cola

Today’s post is focused on Bhurunchuli Village.

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

A Massive Earthquake

On April 25, 2015, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Nepal. This powerful quake affected an estimated 8 million people in 39 of Nepal’s 75 districts, including Nepal’s two largest cities – Kathmandu (where I spent most of my time last week) and Pokhara.

The Coca-Cola Foundation quickly jumped into action by giving a $1 million grant to the American Red Cross in delivering assistance to 75,000 people in 15,000 households by providing emergency healthcare, emergency shelter and restore family links.

Rebuilding in Bhurunchuli Village

Bhurunchuli Village, a small village of the Tamang people, was one of the many communities affected by the earthquake, with over 50 homes completely leveled.

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

Despite the devastation, hope was not lost in Bhurunchuli Village. Rebuilding started immediately, with the help of the Kathmandu non-profit CREASION (Center for Research and Sustainable Development in Nepal), Bottlers Nepal Limited (BNL), Rotary Club of Jawalahkel and close to 400 amazing villagers.

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

The CEO and founder of CREASION, Aanand Mishra, chatted with us about the rebuilding of Bhurunchuli. Mishra shared that it was important that the community be involved in this process, as it gives villagers a sense of pride and worth during a season of grief that post-earthquake damage brings.

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

photo credit: Coca-Cola Company

In fact, the women of this village create the bricks that are used for the new homes built.

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

Talk about girl power. It was impressive to see.

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

photo credit: Coca-Cola Company

There are 24 completed homes, with 10 halfway finished and eight left to go.

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

Each home costs around $5000 to build.

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

Each home is also structurally sound for a future earthquake, with steel rods running through each brick and a metal roof.

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

Bhurunchuli does not plan on falling victim to mother nature again.

Padhero (Bath House) Blessing

The partnership that was been built between BNL and CREASION created more than these family homes, too. Seeing that the post-earthquake damage would be a potential community water and sanitation health issue, the BNL stepped in to address something Bhurunchuli had never had in its village before – a bath house (or padhero).

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

Before the quake, homes in this village didn’t include a bathroom of any type, so it wasn’t uncommon for women to bathe publicly. For all of the obvious reasons you can possibly think of, this was not an ideal situation.

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

During our visit, the grounds for the new padhero received a Buddhist blessing that we were fortunate enough to be a part of.

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

photo credit: Coca-Cola Company

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

There may have been a bit of dancing afterwards, too.

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

photo credit: Coca-Cola Company

Now that a padhero will be in the community, women and young girls can wash in a private space without the risk of rape, assault or embarrassment. This is huge progress for a village such as Bhurunchuli and setting a high standard for neighboring areas who are watching its growth and evolution.

How Coca-Cola is Helping Communities Rebuild Post-Earthquake in Nepal

photo credit: Leanette Fernandez, Funtastic Life

I’ll be keeping a close eye on them, too.

Stay tuned for more updates on my journey through Nepal in the coming days. xoxo

Coca-Cola has sponsored my travel, accommodations and other expenses for my trip to Nepal. All photography is owned by Mom Spark Media unless otherwise noted.