It was a Saturday. On the April 25th, at about 11:55am, I was getting dressed in my room after taking a shower. I was on the fourth floor of our school’s building and suddenly it started to shake. Initially I didn’t recognise it was an earthquake. After a few seconds a cupboard behind me fell and, without any delay, I knew it was earthquake and I shouted loudly and called all of my friends - some of them were taking a shower and some of them were sleeping - then we ran together to the ground floor. As we reached the ground floor, I saw all the walls of our school compound had collapsed and there were lots of cracks. We have a small field in front of our school building and our teachers told us to stay together in the field. I felt so scared. During that time, for me, it was the first time I missed my family a lot.
Everyone was crying from inside all the teacher were too. We students didn’t have lunch for 5 hours. Then our school’s staff cooked food and we stay together and had lunch in the playground of our school. However, the ground was still shaking continuously. So that day we didn’t dare go to the fourth floor to sleep. We brought our blankets and pillow downstairs and we slept together in our school bus. This is how we spend our first day of earthquake.
The next day, most of the student’s family came to our school and took their children to their home. Still, there were about 10 or 11 students who stayed because their families lived so far away. I was among them. We helped the staff arrange everything by cleaning the floor and helping them to cook for the more than 50 people from the local community whose homes were too badly damaged. They brought a large tent and we assisted them to put it up. Again, that second night we stayed in our school’s van. It rained a lot that night and the people who were staying inside the tent also woke up because the rain overflowed inside the tent. The aftershocks continued. It was still shaking many times and we didn’t sleep very well during that situation. However we adjusted to sleeping after 6 days. During that time after the earthquake, I would sleep in different places - somethings in front of the temple, sometimes inside the tent, something in the guard’s room.
This earthquake seriously damaged one of our HVP school buildings. We have struggled. In the above picture, you can see the building which is behind the tent - it was cracked all over the corner of the building. Even the Government of Nepal came to check the school and they said it was unsafe to stay in this building so we demolished our school building because it would have been dangerous to keep using it. After that somehow our teacher managed to run classes and other activities by the attached tent on our school’s playground and we studied inside the tent for many days. After a few days of studying inside the tent, our teachers managed classes inside the main school building. Because the other building was so badly damaged, there was no room left for the student to study - our teachers of HVP managed it by giving up their office for the students. Right now the construction of our new school building is in process. Due to the financial circumstance, we haven’t been able to complete the building.
We, students, teachers and family of HVP, are working hard to raise funds for this construction but it's not sufficient so we need your assistance.
Our school has a plan to build up to five floors with good facilities for students. This construction of the new building is important for the future of the school and the local community. In this construction, the design for this new building includes using earthquake-resistant technology for the foundations and structure. After this construction, we would have a lot of space for students - more than 15 classrooms, as well as a science lab for Physics, Chemistry and Biology. There will the conference hall inside this building as well. And if there is another earthquake we know we can use this new resilient building for all the students and all the local community too.
I hope you guys understand our feeling towards this project. For this small amount of your support you might help more than a thousand students get a better education. Our school has always been providing a free education for children who can’t afford education. More than 150 students are currently studying without any cost. Being a hosteler of Hindu Vidyapeeth-Nepal, I got the chance to know that this school is working to bring up a generation of people with holistic leadership qualities, who can maintain and develop human virtues within and around them, such as peace, harmony, and love in the form of international brotherhood and co-existence.
Thank you so much for your support.