The villagers of Bihi in the Gorkha district are demonstrating that the local people can work harmoniously and courageously to aid one another in these difficult times. While many have come back from other mountain villages with tales of people fighting over food, Nyima Samdup of Bihi reports that the villagers in Bihi and the surrounding area are willing to share.
According to Samdup, who travelled to Bihi via helicopter earlier in the month to deliver desperately needed supplies, “villagers are not fighting for the food. They are helping each other. Supplies that they receive from different organizations they first collect in one place and once there is enough for all, villagers distribute the supplies equally.”
This is important because the area is inaccessible by land. The cargo trails previously used for caravans of mules to deliver food have now been covered and destroyed by landslides. Their only means of receiving food supplies at present is via helicopter.
Since the earthquake, CGLF has provided 200 tarps and 205 sacks of rice for monks and nuns of the Serang monastery in Bihi.
Samdup says people are rebuilding quickly, but many are still sleeping outside under the tarps provided for them by relief efforts. Upon returning to his village, Samdup noticed many people had already rebuilt their houses and were back sleeping inside.
Of a total population of 315 people, only one man, who was herding cattle at the time of the quake and tragically fell off a cliff, died during the earthquake. Though many of the houses, monasteries, and stupas are damaged, the relief effort is going well in the area due to the resilience of the villagers and their ability to work with each other to make sure everyone is taken care of. Given the area’s remote location, this type of village support is crucial in such dire times of distress.
Here are some more photos, courtesy of Nyima Samdup: