Since early the morning on April 25, 2015, Bhim Lal’s life has changed. As the director of Good Friends of Nepal he has dedicated much of his life to sharing the love of Christ to a country that has not heard the Good News.
On April 25th that all changed.Since 1996 Bhim Lal and Good Friends of Nepal has grown from four Church plants to over 150, with hundreds of baptisms taking place. They have also been able to operate an orphanage, as well as reach others through the development of a literacy class. Bhim Lal’s work and
life have made an incredible impact on the community that surrounds him. The New Vision Orphanage Home serves 20 children in Kathmandu, providing them with food, clothing and education. Good Friends of Nepal was expanding, transforming hearts and lives around the country.
As a 7.9 magnitude earthquake struck near Kathmandu in Nepal, Bhim Lal and his family were forced into the streets as houses began to crumble and thousands were trapped in the rubble, calling out for help.
In the days that would follow, aftershocks and tremors between 4.0 and 6.1 magnitude continued to devastate Kathmandu destroying homes, streets and lives.
As a partner of us here at Partners International Canada, our first concern after hearing about the earthquake was for the safety of Bhim Lal, his family and his team. As the world scrambled to gain understanding of what was going on in a region plagued by poor communication, we were able to share a short, ten minute conversation with Bhim Lal, himself still recovering from the earthquake that had taken place hours earlier. In what can only be described as a blessing from God, Bhim Lal was able to confirm that both he and his family were safe from the immediate damage caused by the earthquake. He let us know he was beginning to reach out to Good Friends of Nepal workers and was striving to make contact with the orphanages to ensure the safety of the children.
For Bhim Lal, it was the beginning of a long night. With all of the damage that Nepal, and Kathmandu, had sustained, many buildings became dangerous to live in. As aftershocks and tremors continued to strike the region, many were forced from their homes for fear that their houses may collapse on them. Bhim Lal and his family were among those who spent the night sleeping out side, with his children sleeping in their damaged, but safe vehicle.
The scene that surround him was one of despair and loss as people trapped by collapsed buildings cried out for help. With thousands killed, and many more injured, Nepal had turned to chaos and those who were safe began to find ways to survive and wait for help.
Throughout Canada, aid organizations began to mobilize as the level of devastation became evident and the death toll began to rise. With a government that was in shambles, Nepal’s first aid teams arrived from India and China. With the Prime Minister unable to enter the country, and the political parties blaming each other, the Nepalese government was ineffective, and to this day has been useless in helping the millions in their country affected by the earthquake.
In our most recent call with Bhim Lal, he shared that while rescue teams are beginning to arrive, the situation continues to be difficult. Currently he has access to a summer tent that shelters both his family and the children from the orphanage, but with the monsoon season coming the shelter he currently has will be inadequate. The community currently is able to draw water from a local well, but the large amount of usage meant that Bhim is concerned about how much longer their drinkable water supply will last. Food is also in short supply, as many markets are closed and the demand remains high.
Partners International Canada has moved swiftly to begin to raise funds not only to help Bhim Lal provide immediate relief, but also to support the rebuilding of broken homes and Churches as Bhim Lal develops his long term plan. In our most recent call to him, Bhim stated that it will be a long time before Nepal is able to recover from this. Here at Partners International we are committed to providing mid to long term relief in order to help Bhim Lal rebuild seven Churches that have been damaged, more damages may arise as there continue to be aftershocks and tremors throughout Nepal. He will also need assistance in rebuilding homes, as well as the orphanages that have sustained damage as well. It is a long process that we are committed to being in partnership with Bhim Lal and Good Friends of Nepal for.
When asked the question; how can we in Canada help, Bhim Lal replies “keep continuing to pray for our safety and for all the people here in Nepal.” Bhim Lal continues to show the love of Christ to people in Nepal and needs our help, prayer and support.
The situation that Bhim Lal has described is grim. With over 8 million people affected by the earthquake (including 1 million children) people like Bhim Lal in Nepal need the prayers and support of Canadians. In a moment of great darkness, we have the opportunity to shine a light and help Nepal recover, both now and in the future.
You can find more information on how to get involved here: www.partnersinternational.ca/nepalearthquake