Two Ways You Can Join Nepal's Earthquake Relief Effort From a Computer

By Maddie Stone on at

There are a few important ways you can contribute to the Nepal earthquake relief effort from anywhere in the world with an internet connection.

Mapping Relief Routes

If you’ve got a keen eye and a bit of patience, consider aiding the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) in their effort to trace disaster relief routes. HOT is a web-based organisation that applies principles of open source and open data sharing for humanitarian purposes. In response to the earthquake, HOT is still in the early stages of mapping roads into remote mountainous regions, and they need all the help they can get. These roads are going to be critical in days ahead, as ground-based rescue and relief efforts work to navigate the rugged terrain.

The best place to get up-to-date information about HOT’s response is via the HOT 2015 Nepal Earthquake wiki coordination page. Here you can find mapping tasks that are currently in progress, select a region, and start tracing routes yourself.

Supporting Disaster Through PayPal

Nepal is one of the poorest countries in the world, with a per capita income of £41.20 ($62.50) per month, according to the World Bank. There are a number of different humanitarian aid groups, including World Vision and UNICEF, that have mobilised to accept disaster donations toward disaster relief.

Now, PayPal has stepped forward to streamline the process even further, allowing you to give any amount you choose to one of 11 charitable organisations. PayPal is covering all costs associated with these donations, ensuring that 100 per cent of your contribution will be sent to the organisation of your choosing via the PayPal Giving Fund.

The charities included in PayPal's structure are all US-based ones, but in the UK there are pages like Oxfam's relief fund, as well as the British Red Cross, where you can donate.

The magnitude 7.8 quake that rocked Nepal late Saturday morning was the largest in over 80 years. As of this morning, there were over 3,000 reported casualties, according to a the BBC. Hundreds more may still remain trapped under piles of rubble.

[Top image credit: Map from the US Geological Survey of the earthquake epicentre and aftershock locations]