Nametsi……….

nametsi landslide march 2010

Nametsi this week

I am too upset to make much sense of this right now. In 1997 I helped build a Health Unit in village called Nametsi in Eastern Uganda.

Nametsi has just been virtually obliterated by a land slide caused by recent rains. Many people are dead and missing. Unfortunately, the Health Unit was the only ‘permanent’ building in the village and so became a natural refuge for the children when they heard the landslide coming….

All gone now; all of it; all of them.

No one knows how many yet, but I know what the total is…….too many. I can’t bear to think about what it must have been like. It would have been pretty dark too when the village was engulfed by the roar and devastation that thousands of tons of mud and rocks brings.

I have been to Nametsi many, many times; always on foot as Nametsi has no road. It generally takes over an hour to walk there from the nearest barely 4×4 drivable track.  This is seriously going to hamper any help, even if it is available. It is a logistical nightmare to get equipment and materials to Nametsi, our team even had to break open bags of cement into smaller loads to get them up there. Cement mixers had to be taken apart to get them up the narrow, twisting and often steep track.

This is what it looks like now…..

The survivors in Nametsi are going to need as much help as they can get. I will try to update this page as I get more news from my friend Damascus, who lives in a nearby village. I will also find out if there is anything that we can do directly, but for now…….

Forgive me for asking but please consider a donation to the British Red Cross go to ‘donate now’ and then down to the Disaster Fund. I can hardly bring myself to sign off as I usually do, but maybe it is more relevant for me now, than ever

Stay well

About Ian

Handyman, humanitarian, inventor, blogger and finally a house husband looking after Cecilia, Julia, William near Hvalstrand in Asker, Norway.
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4 Responses to Nametsi……….

  1. Steve says:

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  3. Ian says:

    I know Keith, it was quite a difficult few days for me and still occupies my dreams. I was the Construction Co-ordinator with CARE and organised all the material up to the unit and walked up there many times to check on progress, not sure if you remember me. Well, we have started to inquire what can be done to help. Rob Fielding , the CARE architect and I have been talking about this and he has approached Raleigh to see what resources they have in Uganda. Sadly they don’t have anything active, but Rob is chasing up a support group that used to be operational in town. Rob is in Namibia at the moment and trying to find new housing for his family as well.
    I have phoned my friend and counterpart form those days and he went up to the site shortly afterwards and confirms what we all knew. It has been catastrophic and truly was an awful day for him to witness the devastation. Of the HU there is no trace whatsoever.

    I will forward your email address to Rob and we can keep you updated if we hear of anything specific that we can do. Unfortunately we are in the process of leaving New Zealand this week to go to the UK and then Norway so will be a little out of the loop for a few weeks.

    Thanks for getting in touch Kieth. I understand EXACTLY how you are feeling.
    Stay well
    Ian

  4. Keith Kelly says:

    I was the Raleigh Inetrnational project manager in 1997 that worked for three months in Nametsi. Shocked and saddened to hear what has happened and would like to help the villagers. Please advise the best way to do so.

    My three months there were among the best of my life and I gained so much from the experience.

    Keith Kelly

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