Rebuilding Lives After Disaster

Prof. Manish Raizada says when a natural disaster strikes, rural people need to rebuild their lives, and grow food, as quickly as possible. Returning to some semblance of normalcy depends upon it.

Raizada, along with his research associate Tejendra Chapagain, has been involved in the creation of emergency sustainable agriculture kits, or eSAKS. The kits are especially designed to aid in the disaster recovery of farm families in developing countries. Those families are often perilously neglected during emergency relief measures that primarily focus on urban centers.

A package that can be widely and cheaply distributed, the kits are packed with disaster recovery essentials, including low-cost tools, temporary shelter and first-aid supplies, as well as seeds and fertilizer for rapidly maturing grains, legumes and vegetables.

During the devastating 2015 earthquake in Nepal, Raizada and his U of G team worked with external partners to distribute components of the ePAKS, which can be assembled for about $40.

In the aftermath of the earthquake, a non-emergency SAK was made available. It is estimated that some 40,000 SAK components will have been purchased by Nepalese households by early 2018, benefiting more than 100,000 people.