Nov 24, 2014

Rebuilding Uttarakhand

India’s worst natural disaster after 2004 Tsunami, hit the Rudraprayag, Uttarkashi, Chamoli and Tehri regions of Uttarakhand in June 2013. Flash floods swept away lives and livelihoods of over 10 lakh people in the state. A month later, more than 10,000 people were ‘presumed dead’.

Responding to the crisis, Oxfam India and our partners Jan Vikas Sansthan (JVS) and Himalayee Paryawaran Shiksha Sansthan (HPSS) focused on life-saving support. We provided food to meet people's immediate needs. We then provided long-term solutions, including transitional shelters, cash transfers to secure food needs and improving people’s access to markets,

In the districts of Rudraprayag and Uttarkashi, we along with our partners, supported 48,100 people by improving their access to food security and safe waterand promoting public health.

The rebuilding and humanitarian rehabilitation continues in the region where people live under the shadow of landslides, soil erosion, heavy rainfall, drying rivers and melting snow.

Lakhs of people were affected by the June 2013 floods in Uttarakhand. As relief efforts to rebuild Uttarakhand continue, your support will help us reach out to more people and help build resilient communities, and help improve the degraded ecosystem.

Oxfam India was one of the first relief organisations to reach Uttarakhand in the aftermath of the disaster. We reached out to over 8,000 households in Rudraprayag and Uttarkashi districts, which were the worst hit. Operations were scaled up once the initial target of 4,000 households was met.

Emergency Materials & Kits
  • 7,980 households were given emergency shelter materials including blankets.
  • 4,055 households were given tarpaulins, ground sheet and hygiene kits.
  • 3,582 households were given solar lamps.
  • 53 households were given Transitional Shelter Kits.
  • 74 households were given Toilet Construction Kits.
  • 50% of these beneficiaries were women or women-headed families.
Emergency Food-Aid& Cash Transfers
  • 1,331 households were given food-aid, air-drops by the Air Force helicopters to the inaccessible areas.
  • 560 households given ‘Unconditional Cash Transfers’ as a part of our Emergency Food Security and Vulnerable Livelihood (EFVSL) intervention.
  • 980 households given ‘Cash for Work ‘ under EFVSL
  • 373 households assisted with ‘Cash Transfer Programs’ as emergency relief.
  • Villages helped with the development work including road repairs.

Oxfam, continues working in the region

Uttarakhand continues to be affected by landslides, soil erosion, heavy rainfall, drying rivers, melting glaciers and a degraded ecosystem. Uttarakhand’s inhabitants face immediate threats to their livelihood, if the ongoing short term and long term measures aren’t supported.

Oxfam India is working on the ‘Long Term Climate Mitigation and Adaptation Work’ of the state by teaching farmers sustainable agricultural methods such as rice and wheat intensification. Over 700 farmers received farm inputs, seeds, and vermin under the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY).

The communities have been taught to use low cost technology to convert organic waste into compost. Fodder plantation was started in villages, to combat overgrazing, that results in desertification of nearby areas. Low cost Poly Houses and Water Harvesting Tanks were built, as models for the community to continue building on their own.
Oxfam India assisted 373 households with ‘Cash Transfer Programs’, providing emergency relief to these households and helping development work in the villages, such as road repair.

Flood Fury
  • Uttarakhand flash floods of June 2013 were one of the worst disasters that the state ever witnessed.
  • More than 300 villages were washed away
  • Over a million people were affected.
  • The death toll was over 10,000.
  • 110,000 people, mostly pilgrims, were trapped in the mountains.
  • More than a 100 villages were inaccessible for over 2 months after the disaster.
  • Tourism sector, which contributes close to 30-35 % of the Uttarakhand’s GDP, faced a loss of more than 10,000 Crore.


Photography: Sam Spickett / Oxfam

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