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Engineers to Tsum Valley Nepal

$295 of $9,000 goal

Raised by 9 people in 44 months
The purpose of this GoFundMe page is to raise money in order to help mobilize volunteer engineers and construction experts to Nepal.  The funds will be used to directly cover the costs of logistics expenses and travel to the remote Tsum Valley in need of post disaster assistance.  The needs are immediate and lingering.  We have plans in the works to put Engineers in the Village of Ripchet as soon as possible.  Currently working in Leogane, Haiti and We have plans to mobilize to Tsum Valley of Nepal as soon as we can tie up logistical loose ends and raise the funds to travel.  I am Co-founder of Village Structures International.  We are partnered with Tsum Society Youth ClubTsum-Nubri Relief Recovery Program and a group of engineers and professionals from Nepal and the US.  Including Sandy Kyin , whose story is amazing and needs to be read, that are working tirelessly to bring assistance to the people of the Lower Tsum Valley.  Please take time to read all of the stories behind our efforts.

My name is Kevin Duke and recently I have been working for engineering companies in Alaska on building construction, infrastructure rehabilitation and environmental remediation projects as a Field Manager. Primarily my work has been in remote and logistically difficult locations throughout Alaska, Guam and the Northern Marianas Islands. The challenges presented by these projects are a continual source of education and fulfillment that keep a smile on my face. I always look for the most challenging of work in order to push my capabilities. So shortly after the Cyclone Pam stuck Vanuatu when David Balmforth, the President of the Institute of Civil Engineers, made a public plea for engineer teams to help with recovery efforts, I was listening. Then after the devestating Nepal earthquake hit the call was sent out once again.  After discussions with my friend Jonathan Noggle, we decided to take on the challenge.

In 2010 Jonathan started Concrete Redevelopment, Inc. in an effort to assist the country of Haiti with their reconstruction needs following the earthquake that nearly destroyed all of Port-au-Prince. The team's response was an idea and paper submitted to the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) for utilizing concrete rubble for post-disaster reconstruction. Building on our current team and experiences, we decided that we currently had access to people with the needed abilities to make an effective response. So we made a few phone calls and sent a few emails

We have now assembled a team of Engineers, Construction Experts and Remote Logistics Specialists that have pledged their time and skills to find an efficient and sustainable approach to the difficult task of rebuilding in Nepal as well assisting in the continued redevelopment efforts in Haiti. Team members from Alaska, California, Virginia, Nepal and the Philippines are preparing to mobilize to these remote locations in order to conduct a debris management and materials reuse plan and to create earthquake resistant home, school and community building designs for rebuilding in the remote islands and villages. Our goal will be to utilize existing building debris, local resources, and the local people for sustainable reconstruction. Our team will produce an economically sound plan that will assist in propelling local villagers into the future by giving them the proper training necessary to rebuild their communities.

In just a few short weeks of action, we have been able to make great strides in identifying the areas of need for our projects.  In April I was fortunate enough to travel to Haiti.  This trip resulted in a partnership with Notre Dame University’s E2E Haiti Program.  My partner and I were able to help begin to develop a needed Quality Assurance Training Program to coincide with the needs of the people of Leogane Haiti.  It also appears as though we are going to be able to bring an intern to Haiti to assist on a full time basis during June through August. More info to come on that front soon.

This week we have also been in talks on a partnership with a group of Engineers in Nepal to begin a reconstruction effort in the Tsum Valley of Nepal.  Once finalized the groups will work to help bring sustainable, local, scalable technology by employing environmentally and seismically sound construction techniques to meet the needs of the people of Nepal.  But not just build, but to teach.  Training is the ultimate goal.  To teach the methods now, so that it can spread and help keep more people safe during future earthquakes. 

As this GoFundMe campaign was originally established in response to Cyclone Pam, I still intend to see where we can offer assistance to the people of Vanuatu.  Plans to meet with recovery groups there are under way.  Once we can make the appropriate contacts, we plan to mobilize to the islands immediately. Donations made prior to this update are already earmarked towards getting an Engineer on the ground in Port Villa Vanuatu.     
 
We have a Start-Up Non Profit that we are in the process of forming and funding in order to more efficiently carry out these activities.  www.villagestructures.org  But until then it is all by personal fundraising.  We have accomplished more than expected already from this stage, but we need your help to keep the help flowing.  All I ask is that you help me find ways to help others.  Please join others to donate what you can and just as importantly, share this campaign with everyone you know.  I need this to break out of my circle in order to be successful.  You can help me do that.
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GOOD NEWS!!! Part of our team, The Tsum Society Youth Club with Rinzin Lama, http://www.gofundme.com/teab5w , were able to secure a helicopter. They are flying 1,168 lbs of salt and cooking oil to Ripchet! Those were the two most important things the village needed. Now for some roofing materials!
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We have talked to all of our team members on the ground in Nepal and all are safe from yesterday's aftershock. We have team members now on the ground in Kathmandu and some currently making the 5 day trek to the village of Ripchet. The most immediate needs are salt and cooking oil. We are also trying to procure more appropriate roofing material as the few tents and tarps that have been provided are insufficient to survive the oncoming monsoon season. One of the biggest needs for the remote valleys are helicopters. This is where the main relief bottleneck is at. Please donate what you can and share this link as far as possible. As you see, our work continues, but we can't keep it up without your help. Donate here or visit www.villagestructures.org to see how else you can help.
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We just got off of a conference call with Members of the Tsum Society Youth Club and Global lives Project as well as a handful of local Nepalese Engineers. We are forming a partnership in order to begin the process of rebuilding the Tsum Valley, specifically the Village of Ripchet, in Nepal as a model project in order to expand and help Nepal at large. Tsum Valley is one of the most remote places on the planet. It is a 2 day bus ride followed by 4 to 5 days of hiking just to get to the Villages of the Lower Tsum Valley. Our logistical challenges will be immense and probably as difficult as they get anywhere in the world. An amazing challenge!!! Please help me spread our message in order to raise funds to continue this work.
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Our trip to Haiti was a success. We were able to find a need with which we can assist. Currently we are working with the University of Notre Dame's E2E Haiti Program to develop a Construction Quality Assurance System in order to provide safe and seismically stable housing construction that better meet the needs of the people of Haiti. Now we are working to take some of the information and lessons learned to apply the same process in Vanuatu. We still plan to be on the ground there in July. We were also contacted yesterday by a group planning to mobilize to Nepal and asked to partner with them in order to assist in their recovery efforts. The conditions and needs there are nearly identical to those in Haiti and we have much we can offer. The work we are doing is obviously needed everywhere around the planet and with your help we can continue. Please take time to read our mission and help us in any way you can. I am prepared to head to any corner of the planet to offer any assistance I can muster. Every share of this link is as important as any money you might be able to contribute. Our website villagestructures.org will be active soon. Stay tuned!
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$295 of $9,000 goal

Raised by 9 people in 44 months
Created March 28, 2015
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$25
Anonymous
44 months ago
AV
$100
Anne Vaillancourt
44 months ago

Thank you for doing this work. All my best to you in your fundraising efforts. Thank you to Eunika Stevula Rogers for pointing me to your cause.

$20
Anonymous
44 months ago
WS
$25
William Smith
44 months ago

Care of Kevin Duke

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