#quakeHELPDESK works to ensure public accountability in Nepal's earthquake relief efforts while providing a platform for affected communities, emergency responders, and volunteers to report gaps at the last mile.
The Accountability Lab and Local Interventions Group have begun a joint effort to collect, synthesize and close the loop on information related to the earthquake response to ensure relief efforts reach those most in need. The idea in the long term is to monitor the response as a whole, evaluate spending and resource mobilization at the hyper-local level, and help individuals and communities solve specific problems on an as-needed basis. In this way, accountability can be built from the bottom-up over time.
The project has three main components: the Mobile Citizen Helpdesks, 1234 hotline and 4000 SMS short-code reporting systems, and financial aid tracking mechanisms. Visit our How section to learn more about how these three programs are working to ensure citizens gain access to the services they need.
The #quakeHELPDESK project has been operational since April 26th, 2015, directly after the first earthquake. Originally, the team mobilized over 70 volunteers who visited over 55 communities in three districts in the valley (Kathmandu Valley, Lalitput, Bhaktapur), directly closing the loop on more than 50 community or citizen problems. These have included efforts to connect pregnant women to needed care, reconnecting families through FM radio calls, and working with aid groups to reorient support toward the localities that need it the most. However, while these are some of the most affected areas of the country, the team quickly realized that there was great need outside of the valley, as well, and expanded to cover the 14 districts that were hardest hit. The 1234 hotline volunteers have answered and directed almost 25,000 calls, and the 4000 SMS short-code has now synthesized and documented over 400 unique citizen requests for help. Visit our Endorsements section to learn more about our impact to date.