Nepal | January 23, 2020

Psychosocial counselling services for tornado-affected women

THT Online

BARA: Psychosocial counselling service spaces have been established in four tornado-affected rural municipalities of Bara, targeting women and girls.

The spaces will support the rural municipalities to respond and mitigate the effect of any protection issues in the areas, ensure multi-sectoral and survivor-centred gender-based violence service and establish appropriate coordination mechanism among all humanitarian actors, local governments, said Murari Karki, the disaster focal person at the Chief District Officer’s office, Bara.

The safe spaces have been set up at Suvarna-4, Devtaal-7, Pheta-1 and Parwanipur-4, he said. They were established in coordination with Suvarna, Devtaal, Pheta and Parwanipur Rural Municipalities with support from the Australian government and UNFPA through WOREC.

Before setting up the spaces, one coordinator, four psychosocial counsellors and four outreach workers were recruited who received an orientation on dealing with trauma and grief of women and girls affected by the disaster and GBV prevention. “We had requested UNFPA for support to address specific needs of women,” Karki said.

Babita Yadav, Deputy Chairperson of Suvarna Rural Municipality, said the tornado, among other things, also broke down the community support system and protection mechanism, making women vulnerable to sexual violence and exploitation.

The four spaces will cater to around 3,000 affected women and girls. A total of 28 people died and 1,176 were injured in the disaster that affected 3,291 families with 1,305 households fully damaged and 1,429 households damaged partially.

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