Providing Quick and Focused Aid to the People of Nepal
The following is a guest post by Duncan Beardsley, PVF board member and Director of Generosity in Action.
On April 26, 2015, a magnitude 8.6 earthquake impacted Nepal. Within hours, Generosity in Action – a Designated Fund at Philanthropic Ventures Foundation – was working with Mountain Travel Sobek – a travel operator who has taken over 5,000 adventure travelers to Nepal – to set up a program to aid the people of Nepal.
Generosity in Action was able to quickly set up a web page with news about the earthquake and information on how to make donations that would be targeted for those areas in Nepal that were along the hiking route of the travelers. By nightfall Kevin Callaghan, President of Mountain Travel Sobek (MTS), had sent an email to all past travelers, and within 24 hours donations were flowing in online.
While donations were coming in, the travel organizers at MTS were contacting the key tour managers with whom they work in Nepal assuring them that, where possible, they would be able to help the local people who had been affected. The local Sherpa and other members of the travel community identified places in need. With assurance that the funds would be used to help the locals, the donations collected were sent directly to the villages that would normally have low priority or even be off the radar of other aid organizations.
To date, over $95,000 has been raised – over half of that came over the Internet within days of MTS reaching out to its network.
PVF is proud to have been able to provide the mechanism that allowed a local Bay Area company to quickly provide a helping hand to the people affected by the earthquake.