CG Ashraya

CG Ashraya

On April 25, 2015, a 7.9-magnitude earthquake hit Nepal — the largest in over 80 years — and killed nearly 9,000 people, injured over 22,000 and leaving hundreds of thousands homeless. In the months that followed, there were several aftershocks, including a 7.3-magnitude that hit on May 12.

Though the earthquakes’ epicenters were located in the Sindulpolchouk and Gorkha districts, 35 of the 75 districts in Nepal were impacted — decimating around 700,000 homes.

The foundation mobilized over 50 staff members, 100-plus distributors and countless volunteers and rapidly started providing basic necessities. However, as monsoon season quickly approached, the Chaudhary Foundation knew it would not be enough.

This project supports SDGs:

Nirvana Chaudhary contacted his friend Jaivir Singh, the vice chairman and president of PwC India Foundation, for help and advice. After several the discussions, the foundation committed $2.5 million USD to build several thousand transitional homes and dozens of schools within the year.

In order to accomplish the task, Chaudhary Foundation set-up an earthquake steering committee. The foundation first considered outsourcing the construction but found them to be too costly for a project of this magnitude. The group decided to use its own in-house expertise and partnering with India-based organization, Sustainable Environment and Ecological Development Society (SEEDS), to come up with an innovative pro-type home for less than half the cost — CG Ashraya was born.

Along with SEEDS, the foundations decided the homes should be built using locally sourced raw materials, as well as materials that could be upgraded or reused in the future to create a more permanent shelter. The shelters were designed to be easily built, so once training was provided to the beneficiaries through CG Shipshikshya, the beneficiaries themselves could construct the buildings. Each shelter’s life span was estimated to be about three to five years, it should cost less than $600 USD and only take threes days with a team of five to build.

Ten out of the 14 most affected districts were chosen as sites for the project. Households were selected based on the following criteria: pregnant women, female heads of house, children under two years of age, elderly residents or highly economically deprived families.

At each construction site a social mobilizer, technical advisor and accountant were deployed. The social mobilizers encouraged people to come forward for construction training, the technical advisors conducted the actual trainings and the accountants kept track of the building supplies.

Between June 2015 to July 2016, Ashraya constructed over 3,000 transitional homes that house over 10,000 residents across 10 districts. Due to the superior design, many of the structures are still being used as homes or shops today and are expected to surpass their lifespans.


Success Stories

Krishna and Pancha

Before the earthquake, Krishna and his wife Pancha lived nearby their CG Ashraya house that they still live in. They were working in the field when the earthquake hit and watched their house collapse right in front of their eyes. They described the moment and the uncertainty that followed as terrifying. For 15 days, they lived in a small tent until the foundation was able to help them build the transitional shelter.

“In that moment, when Chaudhary Foundation helped us, we were very happy because we were in a situation of extreme crisis. We did not have anything and did not expect this to happen and we thank [the foundation] a lot for this.”
— Krishna



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