Archive for the ‘Nepal’ Category

Focus: Nepal and the relief effort

The recent earthquakes in Nepal have been devastating to a country already plagued with problems such as fuel, water and electricity shortages, political instability and uncertainty, and unemployment or rather lack of employment opportunities for its youth.

Pic: AP.

Pic: AP.

I’ve written a number of articles about the ongoing relief effort and needs in Nepal, which are, as with many disasters, not always what one envisages. One article highlighting more practical ways to help was for Asian Correspondent:

But the reality is that numerous problems existed in Nepal before these tragedies, and they will linger long after the international aid effort ceases. And all these issues such as health, education, town planning, traffic management, political stability and fuel supplies will contribute in some way, big or small, to tackling other disasters like this in the future.

It’s a common knee jerk reaction to send $50 or to rush in and assist in a disaster and there’s nothing wrong with that. Aid is required in all forms at this time and much is needed. However the need for sustainable development and rebuilding will be vital in Nepal in the months and years ahead.

Sadly these twin earthquakes have perhaps highlighted those needs in a way nothing else could. For instance there has long been a need for better infrastructure planning, tighter building construction codes and other industry issues affecting architecture in Nepal.

Continue reading at Asian Correspondent.

I have had contact through my Cameras for Asia program with a number of community groups in Nepal. Fortunately all the children and staff at these centres are safe, although they have sustained damage to their buildings. However it’s been encouraging to see them seeking to help others even though they are challenged with resources and funds themselves all the time, earthquake or not.

As I received a few requests for details on where would be a good place to send funds, I recommend either CWC (www.cwcnepal.org) or ITEEN (www.iteen.org.np) who I know personally and are genuinely involved in the local relief effort beyond their regular work. See their pages for bank details. ITEEN (also involved in lobbying for human rights and freedoms in Nepal) is planning to rebuild homes and also has a Go Fund Me Link (www.gofundme.com/u7m973u). Alternatively in the article above were links to more big budget organisations involved in Nepal.

Do note I am currently travelling and posting photos primarily to Facebook. Please see these links: Visited Planet photojournalism and Cameras for Asia.

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All images are purchasable through the Visited Planet database. Feel free to email Jo at admin@visitedplanet.com with your comments/thoughts/photo aspirations. See and learn more at www.visitedplanet.com

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Vimeo: Cameras for Asia slideshow

Take a look inside the exciting world of Cameras for Asia with this promotional slideshow video.

Cameras for Asia 2015 from Joanne Lane on Vimeo.
Do check out other videos I have on Vimeo while you’re there.
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All images are purchasable through the Visited Planet database. Feel free to email Jo at admin@visitedplanet.com with your comments/thoughts/photo aspirations. See and learn more at www.visitedplanet.com

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Book review: Sheer Will

Book: Sheer Will
Author: Michael Groom
Subject: Adventure, inspiration, mountaineering, travel
Why: Inspiration

The title of Sheer Will is a real spoiler alert because this book is all guts, determination and tenacity without the ego or glorification of mountaineering that often comes with it. But it’s also not a spoiler because you’re never quite sure what lies ahead in this tale of climbing the world’s highest peaks. The only thing you know for sure, before you’ve even finished chapter 1, is that this is a man not to be trifled with. Throw a big peak in front of him, remove half his feet (yes seriously!), take away the oxygen, add a snowstorm or blizzard, and you know Michael is going to give it everything he’s got.
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In pictures: Trekking in Langtang

Langtang appealed to me as a trekking destination in Nepal this year having hiked in the Annapurna region already three times. I had heard it was far less busy than both Annapurna and Everest and its location near Tibet was attractive, along with the promise of interacting with people groups in homestays and villages. I was not disappointed. There were far fewer people on the trail and a lot of local culture and life going on to enjoy, largely thanks to it being losar or Tibetan New Year.

The Langtang track follows a river for three days up to the highest village of Khanjim Gompa at 3810m so it doesn’t get that high in altitude. The days were long but there wasn’t the up and down of the Annapurna terrain, just a gradual climb up past high alpine meadows with plenty of grazing yak, Tibetan villages and life, mani walls to admire and follow, plus plenty of snow and high mountains to ponder. I spent several days in Khanjim Gompa as there were day walks further into the valley, up high peaks surrounding us and towards glaciers that plummeted down the slopes around us. The images really tell their own story and all are available in the database.

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Revealed in the early morning light – a gompa half way up the mountain behind the hotel in Khanjim Gompa. Pic: Joanne Lane, www.visitedplanet.com

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Cameras for Asia Nepal: Children’s images

From brick workers to bustling markets and celebrations for the Tibetan New Year, the recent Cameras for Asia workshops in Nepal generated a lot of really great images of life in the Kathmandu valley. The images below were taken by children from the Children’s Welfare Centre in Godwari and the Nepal Muscular Dystrophy Foundation.

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Monk novices at Swaymbhunath for Losar, Tibetan New Year. Pic: Amrita.

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