Sunday 26th April, 2015

On Saturday morning April 25th, a 7.9 magnitude earthquake struck north west Nepal devastating the districts of Lamjung and Gorkha and entire sections of the capital city, Kathmandu. The impact has been felt in India and Pakistan. The earthquake epicentre is in a densely populated area in Gandaki, near Pokhara.  Many aftershocks – measuring well above 5 on the Richter scale – have been recorded.  Major structures have collapsed and there are gaping cracks in roads.  Hospitals are overwhelmed in this already impoverished nation. This is the worst natural disaster to hit Nepal in 81 years.

Various reports estimate the death toll of this tragedy at over 3000 already.  This figure is likely to continue to rise as emergency workers try desperately to rescue people trapped inside ruined buildings.

With large aftershocks still rattling the region, the situation remains critical and conditions unstable. To make matters worse, the weather is cold with rain expected over the next week at least. As people have been driven from their crumbling homes, they must face these harsh conditions sleeping outside and competing for very limited medical, food and water resources.

Thankfully, reports from the Umbrella Team in Kathmandu are positive as all children, staff and volunteers based in Swayambhu were reported safe. However, the homes are compromised so everyone has been forced to sleep outside in the grounds of Manaslu house. Communications are limited and scarce due to power outages and phone network congestion. Most of Umbrella’s youths and reintegrated children are still unaccounted for as of yesterday Monday 27th April but every effort is being made to contact and support the Umbrella family.

Our own Stephen Jenkinson from Ireland and Macartan Gaughan from Australia are on route to Nepal personally to coordinate and support the relief efforts on the ground.

GOAL, who have considerable experience in disaster relief, and The Umbrella Foundation will be working together to help the people of Nepal. Access to clean water, food, shelter and medical supplies will be of paramount importance in the comings days and the focus will be on search & rescue as well as provision of shelter to the Nepali people.

Please donate and encourage others to donate directly to Umbrella to support our emergency relief effort here:

Or for more information email:

Keep up to date with what’s happening on our Facebook page The Umbrella Foundation Australia

Thank you for your continued support

The Umbrella  Australia Team - Linda, Mac, Daniel, Bridie, Carolin, Janette, Desley, Alana & Caroline

Hunter Valley Locavores, Fundraising Event Wrap

Recently, The Umbrella Foundation Australia held a fundraising event at Blackbird Artisan Bakery, and celebrated 100% Hunter Valley produce, to raise awareness, not only, for TUFA, but also for the abundant amount of beautiful food and wine that is grown right in our own back yard!

Everyone who came was treated with incredible food, wine and discussion about some of the issues and privileges that go hand in hand with being a farmer. Cattle farmer, Rodney Rumble, winegrower Ross McDonald, game farmer Charlie Scott, and cheese maker and dairy farmer, Jason Chesworth were kind enough to show their support for TUFA by supplying their delicious produce to Blackbird Artisan Bakery's amazing chef, Carolyn Scott who transformed Rodney's beef, Charlie's quails, and Jason's cheese into delicious dishes, which everyone enjoyed, immensely!

As well as all the toothsome treats that Carolyn and her team had prepared, and the talks given by each individual farmer, the fundraising guests were treated to a special live cross to TUFA president, Linda Harwood, who is currently over in Nepal doing some amazing (and tough!) work establishing various projects for the children and their communities that TUFA supports through various fundraising events, such as this one.

We were given a personal tour of the Umbrella Manaslu House, (one of the three childcare homes based in Swayambhu, Kathmandu) from the rooftop to the lounge room, we were serenaded in song by some of the kids, which was nothing short of amazing! Also, each individual farmer and contributor was thanked personally by Bacchu who is the house father of Manaslu, this was a beautiful gesture, and well received by everyone there.

All in all, it was a very special evening, full of unbelievably good food, great wine, bright smiles and warm hearts. Through our fundraising efforts for the night, we managed to raise $1,498 for various projects currently underway in Nepal. An amazing effort, all around! To all those who came to celebrate 100% Hunter Valley produce, and help raise these much needed funds for TUFA... THANK YOU VERY MUCH!



Volunteer News

Tracey Elliott who will be volunteering in Nepal this coming January has been busy fundraising.  This week Tracey organised a morning tea at her work place 'City of Whittlesea' in Victoria.  We thank Tracey, her friends & work colleagues for their support.  A special thank you to Peter & Anne Phillips who presented Tracey with a very generous cheque donation.

A huge thank you to  Dave Karlson who is the Women's Registrar at Merewether United Football Club.  Dave kindly donated some football kits to our boys in the Kathmandu Umbrella Homes.  There will now be less confusion on who is playing who at the next game!

6th March, 2014

Community spirit is alive and well in Maitland NSW.  Today the Student Representative Council (SRC) from Maitland Grossmann High School held a fund raiser for Umbrella.  Many delicious cakes (some decorated with Umbrella's) and cookies were for sale with all proceeds donated to Umbrella.  There was much excitement as kids from all directions gathered around mountains of cakes for their morning recess.  An extraordinary amount of work went into organising the fundraiser and special thanks to Lee Osborne (Careers Adviser) and her fellow teachers for arranging the event.  We are all so grateful to this inspirational group of students who took time out to cook and support our children in Nepal.   A huge $749 was raised from the day!

18th January, 2014

Maitland NSW lady Karen Pollard celebrated her 50th birthday in style with a glamour puss birthday party, held at a local hotel function room.  A loyal supporter of The Umbrella Foundation Australia Karen asked her guests to contribute to TUFA by putting their change in a golden piggy bank which was located on the bar.  We are excited to report that $480 was raised and a huge thank you to Karen her husband Wayne and guests.

A glamorous Karen with the golden piggy bank