20 May 2016

The DEC & MyDonate – One year after the Nepal Earthquake appeal



Over a year has passed since the Nepal Earthquake, one of the worst natural disasters in Nepal’s history. Since April 2015 the DEC Nepal Earthquake Appeal raised over £87m helping provide relief to more than 1.6m affected people.

The DEC (Disaster Emergency Committee) led by CEO Saleh Saeed is an umbrella organisation made of up 13 of the UK’s aid agencies. These agencies (including charities like the Red Cross, Save the Children and Oxfam) were able to use the funds raised to reach 50% more people than originally planned, providing water, shelter, food and essential medical care or supplies despite the weather conditions and terrain.

Maintaining inspiration and motivation when dealing with disasters

Saleh said “I always get inspired by visiting countries and communities that are facing extreme poverty or disasters; often it’s the people with the least who are the most generous. Meeting such people always motivates me to do more and think of new ways we can help and share resources and knowledge. The development and humanitarian sector has to not only keep up with wider social changes: it also has to spearhead change itself and find new and more effective ways of reaching out to people.

Challenging and painful

“It’s extremely challenging and painful when we can’t respond with a DEC appeal because there is low media interest and people not always being aware of what’s going on in the poorest countries around the world– the needs are huge but sadly we can’t respond to everything. Countries like South Sudan, Yemen and Central African Republic have huge unmet humanitarian needs and that’s what I see as my biggest challenge both on a personal and professional level.”

BT MyDonate and the DEC

MyDonate works alongside the DEC powering the appeal platform for online donations. Saleh says MyDonate is “critical for the DEC appeals: it’s always there, robust, reliable and dependable regardless of the size of the appeal and the demands placed upon it. Its straight forward approach means we can count on it for huge numbers of donations that come in during the peak of an appeal.

One of Saleh’s most memorable events was a MyDonate telethon and “the response to in the November 2013, Typhoon Haiyan which devastated the Philippines and caused unprecedented damage to so many communities. The DEC Philippines Typhoon Appeal became a major catalyst for people in the UK to stand in solidarity and support those affected. The response was massive: schools, companies, communities, the media and individuals up and down the country working in partnership to help those in need. The DEC Telethon, held at BT Tower, squeezed in some 50 celebrities, all doing their bit to help raise funds for the appeal: very soon the appeal reached £97m and to date has helped over 900,000 people in the Philippines rebuild their lives – the work continues to this day.”

Alice Hunt, head of BT MyDonate said “BT and BT MyDonate are extremely proud to support the DEC respond to times of crisis across the world whether this is providing a mass appeal page or organizing a celebrity telethon. Everyone at MyDonate is inspired and motivated to do even more for charity when they see the impact that the money raised has on lives across the World. One year on from Nepal the impact of the money raised is clear to see and the legacy of the Nepal Earthquake Appeal.”

Find out more

You can learn more about the DEC and its work here www.dec.org.uk

See the aftermath of the Nepal earthquake and explore the response from DEC and its member agencies at http://aftershock.dec.org.uk/

Fundraise or donate to the DEC on MyDonate at https://mydonate.bt.com/charities/dec

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