On April 27th, the upper camps of Everest were evacuated. Rocks had ceased falling and medical emergencies had subsided since the 7.8 magnitude earthquake had rattled base camp 48 hours earlier. But, the trauma across Nepal was still growing. Lives lost, homes wrecked, people injured.
Like many people across Nepal, the climbers and mountain workers had all been through a life-altering event. Everyone had seen trauma up close and personal. Some provided first aid while others did the harsh work of addressing the deceased. More needed to be done… but what?
As an emergency tapers down, the participants might feel the urge to leave, or to withdraw into themselves. These are both natural protective mechanisms. For those that can though, stepping forward to begin the recovery is often best medicine for everyone.
Helping to begin the recovery is healing. It heals both those survivors who need help, and those who step forward to provide the help.
As we slowly hiked out of the mountains, spontaneous work parties of trekkers, climbers and Nepali mountain workers:
- Dug through rock avalanche rubble at the Everest field hospital to retrieve medical supplies.
- Pulled cash from their pockets and gifted it to villagers in need.
- Passed the hat for donations to jump start community rebuilding.
- Picked up debris from the avalanche basted base camp (thank you Indian Army team!)
- Assisted devastated families disassemble their destroyed homes, and saved the valuable materials so that re-construction could begin soon.
Here’s a quick video of my IMG teammates (both Nepali and foreigners) helping a Sherpa family in Phortse. Wood is precious in this beautiful alpine village, so we are working to carefully retrieve the important tree-trunk beams:
Once back in their home countries, many people that I traveled and climbed with in Nepal contributed money to Nepal’s recovery effort, and multiplied those efforts by sponsoring numerous fundraising events. The charity that I have partnered with is The dZi Foundation. There are many other worthy organizations too.
The people of Nepal are resourceful and resilient. They have endured tragedies before and they will move past this one too. But they need help with the recovery. They need our donations and our visitations. And, they need us to share fortitude with them, as they rebuild their communities and their resilience.
Once a crisis is past, use your energy and courage to begin recovery and to amplify resilience in others.
Speaking of Adventure
Note: This is the seventh video in a series that I shot on Mount Everest after the earthquake on April 25, 2015. There will be another new video posted here soon.