Maclean hearts rally to help Nepal rebuild
ANIL Chhetri was preparing to watch the AFL when the Anzac Day earthquake ripped through Nepal.
Anil lives in Maclean with his partner Kalpana Thakur, who is a doctor at the Clarence Medical Centre.
The earthquake sent shock waves through social media and the pair rushed to phone relatives and friends back home.
One relative who lived on the outskirts of Kathmandu felt the shock, but did not know of the destruction until they received the call from Australia.
"Kalpana's brother owns a cafe that was in centre of the earthquake," Anil said
"Only his cafe was left standing.
"When we rang the brother he said it was like the movie 2012."
The couple are now holding a fundraiser night at the bottom pub (Clarence Hotel) to build a school.
"Initially we gave money to my mother and brother," Kalpana said.
"They bought basic dry food, filled up a bus and travelled out to remote villages to distribute supplies where they weren't getting to."
Now the couple want to go further to rebuild their home country.
The couple will collaborate with an Australian charity, still in the process of registration, to rebuild the school campus.
Nepalese-Australians with connections to local builders and resources will run the charity.
"We want the money to go to right place," Kalpana said. "With so many organisations you don't know where money goes."
Anil said she was surprised with how much support the business community gave the fundraiser.
An Iluka jeweller even made a piece valued at $800 to be auctioned off on the night.
"It's really amazing to live in a community that comes together in a way to make such a difference in the lives of Nepalese."
Anil Chhetri and Kalpana Thakur moved to Maclean two years ago from Sydney.
- August 1, 5.30pm
- The Bottom Pub (Clarence Hotel), Maclean.
- Tickets are $30 and available at the Clarence Medical Centre, Maclean. They include a two-course meal and entertainment. There will also be many auctions and raffles on the night.
- For more information phone 6645 3299.