Campus Community Offers Support for Those Affected by Nepal Earthquake
An international tragedy is hitting close to home on the Syracuse University campus. Students with ties to Nepal are anxiously awaiting information on loved ones following Sunday’s earthquake that caused wide-spread damage in the region. Ten students from Nepal are part of the Syracuse University community, and all of them are hoping to hear something positive as the tally of victims from the quake continues to increase. As of Tuesday morning the death toll stood at 4,600.
“I am absolutely devastated by this calamity,” said Prabesh Rupakheti, a graduate teaching assistant in the College of Engineering and Computer Science. “Many of my relatives have been missing for days and many others have lost their homes. My parents are living outside the house in a camp where the availability of food and water is very scarce. I lost many of my good friends and still have not been able to reach others who live there. I want to help my people and pray to God (for the return to normality).
[box type=”info” align=”alignleft” size=”medium”]What You Can Do
- Hendricks Chapel has opened the Small Chapel on the lower level of Hendricks Chapel for silent reflection and prayer from 8:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. each day this week. Staff will be available from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. if students, staff, or faculty would like to engage in discussion or dialogue.
- Individuals can donate to help earthquake victims by visiting the Red Cross website at http://www.redcross.org. Once there, click on the “Donate Now” button. You can specify that you would like your donation to support Nepal Earthquake Relief.
- Aythos, a nonprofit whose executive director, Beau Miller, is a Syracuse University alumnus, focuses on helping people in the villages of Nepal. Miller is on his way to Nepal to help, and individuals can donate here.
Pat Burak, director of the Slutzker Center for International Services, says her staff has reached out to all students affected by the tragedy with offers to help. Burak says a special issue of the Slutzker Center’s newsletter was distributed as news of the earthquake broke on Sunday, offering an opportunity to gather to determine the best way to offer assistance.
It’s not just students from Nepal who are affected. Pamela Heintz, associate vice president and director of the Mary Ann Shaw Center for Public and Community Service, is working to inform the campus community of ways in which to help. Heintz’s son Job has a long-standing relationship with Nepal, and is currently the CEO of the Himalayan Cataract Project. Heintz says he is okay, but is relaying his own accounts of the destruction. The Himalayan Cataract Project is one of many agencies accepting donations for earthquake relief, setting up a fund raising effort on their website.