AFTER raising nearly £20,000 after the Nepal earthquake, staff at Trowbridge charity People Against Poverty have visited the country to see how their money is being spent to support aid workers.

The charity, of Grangeside Business Centre, Devizes Road, Hilperton, launched the appeal after the 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck in April and raised £19,155 for aid efforts in the epicentre district of Gorkha.

It works in two areas either side of the epicentre of the earthquake, Kathmandu and Pokhara and helped set up community hub Starlight Centre with project leader Krishna, who lives in Nepal with his wife Sita, a Nepalese national.

Charity manager Jenny James said the trip a month ago was a once in a lifetime experience.

She added: “We are grateful to all the donations and we had someone donate the costs of our flights so we could make the trip to Nepal.

“It was my first time in Nepal and it was just incredible because the people are absolutely beautiful and so gentle but it is a country on its knees because it is trying to rebuild after the earthquake but also because of political changes.

“The money we raised went on emergency aid such as tents and food which added to the collaborative medical care provided by the British Red Cross.”

The charity, which had its fourth birthday with sister organisation Business Against Poverty in July, is in regular contact with Krishna, who has been working to give families food and shelter.

Miss James said: “We managed to speak to families that we work with and we had to be quite sensitive about it because the children are still deeply affected by the earthquake. The one thing that they kept saying is how there aren’t any tourists no more and they desperately want people to go back.”

Miss James and colleague Val Huxley saw firsthand the issues faced including the recent fuel blockade on the India-Nepal border.

“Krishna is our project leader and he had to queue for 35 hours to be given only five litres of petrol and it is devastating for people there,” she added.

The charity says the project will now be known as The Starlight Scholarship Programme and focus solely on giving children access to education. Visit