All images: ROKPA
Goal 2: Zero Hunger
How #TOGETHERBAND and ROKPA are helping people battling hunger in Nepal
By EMMA ELMS
28 MAY 2021
Here at #TOGETHERBAND, we’ve always valued our close ties with Nepal, where we’re proud to employ a committed team of artisans who create our #TOGETHERBANDs. Our long-standing partnership with ROKPA, an international relief organisation that helps the people of Nepal, allows us to offer well paid opportunities to vulnerable women there, providing the financial independence needed to keep them safe. So, for our launch of Goal 2: Zero Hunger, we’ve chosen to team up with ROKPA to donate vital meals to families in need in Nepal.
Right now, the country is in crisis. In recent weeks, as neighbouring India struggles with a surge in COVID cases, the situation in Nepal has rapidly escalated. So far, since January 2020, Nepal has seen over 500,000 cases and well over 6000 deaths from the virus.
According to the charity ROKPA, the real number of COVID cases in Nepal, which has a population of over 28 million, could be even higher. The consequences are terrifying including, ‘overcrowded hospitals (patients are lying in the corridors and at the entrances), lack of oxygen, and far too few doctors and nursing staff – the situation is desperate, there is a lack of everything,’ a ROKPA spokesperson told us.
As COVID spreads rapidly across Nepal, the country’s hunger crisis has also worsened. ‘We’ve seen so many people on the streets begging for food,’ says Lea Wyler, Co-Founder and President of ROKPA International. ‘The homeless community, those with disabilities, families and all those who lost their job because of the long-lasting lockdown have been struggling the most. We’ve seen an unprecedented demand for support from ROKPA Soup Kitchen.’
ROKPA, which has run a network of vital projects to help those living in poverty for over 40 years, responded to the emergency last year by extending its Soup Kitchen outreach work. Now, as part of our new #TOGETHERMEALS campaign, we will be donating food direct to ROKPA Soup Kitchen, which provides food packets that feed a family of four for a week in the capital city of Kathmandu. For many, it’s the only practical support they have and a much-needed lifeline during the pandemic.
People queue for support from ROKPA
Even once lockdown finally ends, Nepal’s hunger crisis will be far from over. Working with ROKPA and other carefully chosen partners, we hope to reach our global target of providing at least 5000 lunches/dinners via our inaugural #TOGETHERMEALS initiative. We will be donating meals for every #TOGETHERBAND product we sell throughout the summer to both ROKPA Soup Kitchen and an incredible Brazilian charity, Gerando Falcões, which has set up its own food voucher scheme.
Please help us if you can. Let’s end hunger #together.
100% of profits from the sales of #TOGETHER products go to charities that advance the Sustainable Development Goals. Find out more here.