There has been major progress on this. The new Health Post and Birthing Centre is built now beyond window sill level and the roof structure is being prepared.
We started work on developing a health programme in Taplejung about 5 years ago, led by two very experienced Trustees with medical backgrounds, Dr Debbie Bartley and Dr Kate Keohane. They carried out an extensive survey of needs in the region (“villager views”) and have developed a very thoughtful plan to transform community health in the Taplejung region, a remote and very poor part of east Nepal. However, there is also significant need for capital investment and because we do not have the capital to fund all this need, we decided the biggest priority was to build a new Health Clinic in Yamphudin, one of the most remote villages in the district we cover. The existing health clinic was in state of disrepair, damaged in the earthquake, and near a river with structural erosion and subsidence
We looked at the cost benefit analysis of retrofitting the old health post but the economics did not make sense and the location of the new one is much better and much closer to the village.
We have decided to use two of our partners on the ground for this work. Our main partner for all health work is AFN (one of the founders is Dr Jangmoo Sherpa) and they worked on the prioritisation work, the detailed planning work, helped with the community mobilisation, and will manage the programme once the building has been complete. They are also responsible for kitting out the health clinic with all medical equipment.
For the building work we are using REED. We chose REED because we have worked with them on the rebuild programme for the earthquake, including rebuilding 16 classrooms in Taplejung, and REED have worked with the Yamphudin community for 10 years working on our education programme.
After completion the health post will provide services to around 900 community people living around this vicinity. One of the key themes of the Trust programme is the Maternal Child Health and Nutrition (MCHN) service and the new health clinic will be essential – childbirth procedures have to date been carried out in terrible conditions with frequent incidents of infant and maternal mortality.