Not only Purna, but almost all the residents of Aalampuin Dolakhahave now rebuilt earthquake-resilient houses.
Aalampu is one of the villages in Ward no. 6 of Bigu Rural Municipality, Dolakha which earlier was a single VDC in itself. The village is an integrated settlement, as one can see its whole landscape glued in the chest of an inclined hill.
Almost 600 houses were destroyed by the April 2015 earthquake and for two years temporary shelters made with zinc sheets dominated the beauty of this hill station. But now the scenario has changed.
On the lap of the hill lies the house of PurnaThami. His wife SukhamayaThami, along with her fellow villagers, was in the kitchen garden picking the vegetables. Their only son has gone to France to study and has already married off her two daughters. One of them is in her postpartum period hence she has arrived to her father's home to rest.
After two years of struggle in a temporary shelter, Purna’s family has shifted to a earthquake-resilient house.
“We are finally back to our normal ways,” visibly-happy Purna shared. “We have passed so many dark days and nights before. We remained under the plastic tunnel prepared for vegetation for more than two years.”
Not only Purna, but almost all the residents of Aalampu have now rebuilt earthquake-resilient houses. They had no knowledge about the earthquake-resilient houses before and hardly had any idea about receiving the government’s private housing grant.
However, their confusion ended when the BaliyoGhar Program reached out to them and taught them to build earthquake-resilient houses.
“After a group from BaliyoGhar came to our doors, we came to know about the process to receive the government grants,”shared Shanti Thami of the village. “And,we came to know about the earthquake-resilient houses after the mason training.”
Purna now feels that building earthquake-resilient houses is not a big deal when you involve the trained masons. The villagers began to rebuild their houses after the first mason training began at the end of 2016.
And, he also understands that the government grant of Rs. 300,000 has been provided to encourage the villagers to build earthquake-resilient houses. “If you have a trained mason, the cost of building an earthquake-resilient house is not too costly.”
Out of 597 houses that were collapsed in Aalampu, 320 houses have been built and more than 100 houses are being built, as of end of April 2018.