URGENT LETTER FROM Don Messerschmidt (Nepal 1963-65)


Shortly after the Nepal Earthquake of April 25 2015, Peace Corps/Nepal withdrew all 53 volunteers and 32 trainees and sent them home, out of concern for “Volunteers’ health, safety and security.” See peacecorps.gov/media/forpress/press/2548/, and peacecorps.gov/resources/faf/nepal/.

I am seeking to find out who among the almost 4,000 volunteers who have served in Nepal, have either returned since April 25 (or were there at the time and stayed on) to help in earthquake relief and recovery, and any others who have been working from home on Nepal Earthquake relief, fund raising, etc.

I am preparing to write an article which touches on PC and RPCV response to the crisis, and I need their stories and perspectives. If you are one of them, or know of one or more, please contact me by email at dmesserschmidt@gmail.com.

I, too, am going to Nepal, arriving in Kathmandu on June 13 for about a month. While there I will—

(1) participate in recovery activities;don-on-trek

(2) record and write stories highlighting the amazing resilience demonstrated by the Nepalese to put their lives and communities back together;

(3) document what other RPCVs have done/are doing vis-à-vis the crisis.

I am going on a voluntary basis under auspices of the Gorkha Foundation (GF), for which I serve as a board member. The Gorkha Foundation is an All-Voluntary Based 501(C)3 Non-Profit. We focus our development (and now disaster assistance) work in the central district of Gorkha, at the epicenter of the April 25 quake.

For more information, see: http://gorkhafoundation.org; also facebook.com/pages/Gorkha-Foundation/191426006477?fref=ts, and facebook.com/profile.php?id=100009485742733.

While in Nepal, I will be posting observations and experiences at facebook.com/don.messerschmidt.5, and on Twitter as @don_bajey at http://twitter.com/don_bajey.

Meanwhile, an essay of mine entitled ‘Nepal Will Rise’: Writing positive in the Wake of the Quake, will appear in the Earthquake Recovery Issue of the popular Kathmandu-based ‘ECS Nepal magazine‘, online at http://ecs.com.np, after June 15th.

Don Messerschmidt, RPCV Nepal-2, 1963-65
Writer, Anthropologist, Advisor & Volunteer to the Gorkha Foundation (Nepal) for Earthquake Relief & Recovery
Email: dmesserschmidt@gmail.com
USA Phone: (1) 360.256.8596 (and in Nepal from June 13 to July 7 2015 at (977) 98030.48806.

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