2014-15 was a year of significant upheaval in Nepal, with two earthquakes in April and May devastating the country, killing nearly 9000 people and leaving hundreds of thousands displaced. Briony, Co-Founder and CEO, had moved to Nepal in August 2014, and had been working with WFN on a social business designed to engage and benefit female small agricultural producers across Nepal. We had conducted months of ideation, market research and product testing, and had been growing WFN HQ's small commercial organic farm. But when the earthquakes struck, we put these programs on hold and responded immediately to the needs of women and their families.
Our team of volunteers in Australia, led by one of our founding members and leaders, Carmen, mounted a fundraising campaign that raised almost a quarter of a million dollars, while Briony reported back from Nepal where she continued to support the relief effort.
With the support of our global community, we were able to provide over 65,000 Nepalis with relief supplies, prioritising the needs of women who are so often disproportionately affected by disaster. We provided food, clothes, shelter, water, oral rehydration salts, and sanitation and hygiene packages including products for women and girls to manage their menstruation.
We supported WFN to facilitate community meetings, ensuring that women's voices were front and centre in conversations about how to respond to the earthquakes. We organised helicopters for WFN to take supplies to remote regions that hadn't received aid. And we later hosted an event in Melbourne, The Disaster Agender, to share our learnings with our community back in Australia.