Nepal suffered a 7.8 earthquake early Saturday afternoon, April 25. The epicenter of the earthquake was 50 miles outside of Kathmandu. While READ Nepal's team members in Kathmandu are safe, communications to our rural partner communities have been challenging. We know that at least a dozen have sustained moderate to severe damage, and our READ Centers are coordinating relief efforts.
With about 27 million people - more than half living on less than $2 per day - Nepal is one of the poorest countries in the world.1 For more than half of the rural population, it takes longer than half an hour to get to the nearest all-weather road,2 making it hard for rural Nepalis to access resources. Social norms make girls’ education a low priority, and as a result 53.3% of women can’t read.3 Schools are often inaccessible and have no books for a library or resources for a computer lab. Furthermore, less than 30% of the rural population has access to electricity.4
READ's work in Nepal
READ has its roots in Nepal, where our first office opened in 1991 after a rural villager told our founder that all he wanted for his village was a library. Since then we have opened READ Centers across the country, offering training programs in livelihood skills, literacy, health, and technology. With our partner communities, we have seeded sustaining enterprises that address community needs: from fish farming and turmeric farming to a community radio station. Almost 4,000 women participate in savings cooperatives at READ Centers in Nepal.
To learn more about READ's work in Nepal, click here to download a pdf overview.
To learn more about READ's core program areas, click here. Some of our most popular trainings in Nepal include:
- Practical Answers – in partnership with Practical Action
- Children and Youth programs
- Technology - digital literacy
- Livelihood skills training
- Savings Cooperatives
- Adult Literacy - in partnership with the Ministry of Education
- Women's Empowerment - leadership / gender training, and more
READ Centers in NepalCenters Featured Centers
 World Bank DataBank 2014
 World Bank, Transport in South Asia, 2007
 UNESCO Institute for Statistics, Nepal Country Profile 2011 and World Bank DataBank 2014
 World Bank, "Power and People: The Benefits of Renewable Energy in Nepal"
 United Nations Development Programme, Human Development Report Indices 2013
 UNESCO Institute for Statistics, Nepal Country Profile 2011