Siddhartha School Project

Floods Devastate Ladakh by tsewangnorbuvivek
August 7, 2010, 10:20 pm
Filed under: School News

On 5th August around 12 mid night the whole Ladakh was rocked by a devastating mudslide due to cloudburst. The most affected areas are lower Leh and Choglamsar areas [just a few miles from the school]. Apart from these two places many other villages were badly affected by the flood. Many… lost their lives and hundreds still missing. The army was put into action for the rescue operation. Both the civilians and the army are actively working to rescue all those stuck under the debris. Many tourists are also volunteering in the rescue operation.

Our school is fine. The school is closed for the summer vacation from the 1st to the 10 of august 2010. All our children are at home and some of them probably lost their relatives but we will have to wait and see… we don’t know anything yet. Hopefully all our children are safe.

So far around 120 died and about 800 missing. The situation is still not under control. People are desperately searching for their lost loved ones with a hope to see them alive. The hospitals are crowded with people either with injuries or …coming to find their relatives or friends and some coming to identity the dead bodies. Many people are homeless. Many lost their family and relatives. We have lost so much its hard to imagine the  loss.

Mrs. Dechen, our Hindi teacher at Siddhartha High School was among the worst affected. She was in her house and didn’t know the situation will be such a night mare. Around mid night Dechen was awakened by a strong thunder and lighting and heavy rain fall. When she woke up she saw muddy water seeping in her kitchen and before she could even think she quickly grabbed her baby and a mountain of mudslide just pushed her away along with her house. In an instant she was separated from her one year old baby.
For about 20 metres both of them were washed away by the mudslide before she ended up in a house debris under a staircase. She thought her baby was dead and just as she came to senses she heard her baby scream in a distance. She just ran and grabbed her baby who was completely covered in mud and ran back to the only shelter. She spend the whole night sitting in of the half damaged house hoping and prayer for her life. By morning the rescue people rescued her and her baby. Both ended up in the hospital for couple of hours. They got a few stitches and now they are recovering. I was happy to see both of smile and grateful for a new life. But she lost everything. She is happy to be reunited with her baby at least.


5 Comments so far
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Glad to know that the school is fine. Hopefully all the children, staff & their families are safe.
have you heard anything about the Secmol campus at Phey? We had met the volunteer coordinator Rebecca Norman & had visited thier campus a couple of weeks back. Please let me know if you have any information. Rebecca’s sister has been unable to contact them and is hoping someone can provide her with some information. (

Comment by Roshan Baliga

Hi, Roshan — sorry but we have very little news really at this point. No idea what’s happening in Phey. It is on the Indus River west of Leh, is that right? I hope you hear something very soon.

Comment by siddharthaschoolproject

Thanks for the quick response. Unfortunately no form of communication seems to be working – Airtel/Govt helpline/Satellite phone numbers. I will keep trying to call. In case you hear anything please let me know.


Comment by Roshan

I’m so sorry to heat about this terrible tragedy. I’m sending positive thoughts and love to everyone affected. What can we do to help?

Comment by Jenny Dougherty

Hi, Jenny — about how to help: see our recent blog post on sending humanitarian aid. Siddhartha School Project is able to wire money directly to aid coordinators in Ladakh. Every donation counts 100% and no donation is too small. $10 will probably feed an extended family for a week or two, due to the exchange rate. Thanks for your support and for spreading the word!

Comment by siddharthaschoolproject

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