18 April 2017
We are delighted to announce that we have won the International Charity Project of the Year Award at this year’s British Expertise International Award Ceremony for our work with Community Action Nepal (CAN). The ceremony was held in London on 5th April.
CAN is a UK-based charity, founded by British mountaineer Doug Scott CBE, and works to improve the living and working conditions of the indigenous mountain people in Nepal.
Following the devastating Nepal earthquakes that decimated entire communities in 2015, WYG pledged to support CAN in the reconstruction of schools, health posts, and other key infrastructure, in rural Himalayan locations.
We quickly deployed project management, design, geology and engineering expertise to Nepal to carry out damage assessment and develop a realistic and achievable rebuild programme.
Two years on from the disaster, we have supported the repair or rebuild of over 30 projects, following “Building Back Better” principles. Throughout the programme, we embraced the charity’s ethos to achieve a sustainable solution promoting local labour, material and vernacular architecture to improve longer term benefits to the local communities. Our experts also worked with locals to re-introduce simple seismic resilient building techniques, mentoring the CAN engineers and overseers to develop the skills and capacity that will help the local communities to become self-sustaining.
Glyn Utting, Principal Project Manager at WYG, commented: “I am so proud to have worked on this project and to have become a Trustee of the charity in the process. Our relationship with the CAN team has gone from strength to strength, and I feel like, together with the Nepalese people, we have achieved an extraordinary amount in a relatively short time.”
Doug Scott commented: “We would like to thank WYG for the company’s 100 percent commitment in support of the mountain people of Nepal. WYG has provided generous “in kind” support enabling us to benefit from Glyn Utting’s prodigious project management and structural engineering skills, the expertise of Cara Buchan, an architect with seismological expertise, as well as Will Pearson and Simon Eden, both well-qualified geologists. The WYG team waded through monsoon rivers, coped with blood sucking leeches and faced extreme cold whilst working in partnership with our Nepalese colleagues.”
The story of our successful collaboration with CAN is important because it clearly illustrates the power of community spirit prevailing over tragedy and rebuilding hope. It has changed the lives of hundreds of people, including our colleagues who travelled to Nepal to share their knowledge and expertise and help with the reconstruction effort.
It is also testament to how, as an organisation, we are able to take our corporate technical and expeditionary expertise, and deploy that expertise into some of the world’s most remote and challenging environments, enabling our clients and partners to achieve their aims and ambitions.
Furthermore, it is evidence of our understanding and appreciation of the importance of creating sustainable and enduring solutions. We have acted as a catalyst to the success that has been achieved, by providing the local communities and Nepalese CAN team with the confidence and skills to self-deliver the rebuild programme, as they have done.
Read the full reaction from Community Action Nepal on their website.