Rotarians from the Grantham Kesteven Rotary Club welcomed Greta Stratford to their latest meeting to tell members and guests about her work in Nepal and to update them on the current situation in the country, which has now been devastated by two earthquakes.
The club first came into contact with Greta when its international charity, Trade- Aid, worked with her to provide its ‘teacher boxes’ for schools in Nepal.
Greta first went out to Nepal in 1979 and made 10 extended visits over the years until 2009, working on a variety of projects with local churches and people. For 26 years she funded the projects herself but in 2005 set up the Grantham-based charity, Nepal in Need, to help carry on the work. She and the three other trustees are all Methodists belonging to different local churches. Every penny raised goes to Nepal.
The projects have included building churches; paying the school fees of orphans; furnishing their hostel; and equipping their kitchen and providing them with clean water and solar lighting to help them study because up until then the children had been sleeping on concrete floors.
She has set up a co-operative bank to support local businesses and worked to support those in trouble.
Many people were at church when the earthquake struck and Greta has received news and photographs from her friends in Nepal. There have been countless deaths and injuries and roads are impassable.
Following the second earthquake, pastors from the churches together with representatives from Nepal in Need have sent out teams of local people to help and provide tents, blankets, food and water to those affected.
Greta will be 90 this year and, although she is no longer able to go to Nepal herself, she is passionate about the country, its people and the work being done there by Nepal in Need. Greta said the Nepalese people are resilient and want to help themselves.
She said: “There is hope.”