The devastating earthquake that hit Nepal at the weekend has rightly been given widespread coverage in the print, broadcast and web media.

Locally, it has triggered a major response from two charity organisations based in Fermanagh. DMW and Livability International have been working in Nepal and now face helping in a crisis situation.

For the last 12 years DMW has been supporting the development of trauma counselling in Nepal, helping build the capacity of a local Nepali organisation called Kopila Nepal. Livability International has a similar long-term capacity building relationship with Nepal’s Spinal Injury Rehabilitation Centre.

Michael Brown and Stephen Muldoon, the directors of DMW and Livability International respectively, are now calling for help to support their Nepali partners to help the earthquake victims.

Kopila has grown into Nepal’s leading psychological trauma counselling organisation. Following the earthquake Kopila Nepal’s staff are under extreme pressure to meet the huge demand. The immediate need in Nepal is food, shelter and health care so right now Kopila staff are needed to offer psychological support to relief workers digging bodies out of rubble and dealing with horrific injuries and extreme stress.

The demand for their services was already huge but this earthquake has changed everything. Kopila are providing emergency food and blankets as well as support to people under enormous psychological stress and anxiety.

Livability International, a disability and development organisation based in Enniskillen has been working in Nepal since 2002 in partnership with the Spinal Injury Rehabilitation Centre (SIRC). Its focus has been on supporting the sustainable development of rehabilitation services for people with spinal injury and other disabilities, through the establishment of rehabilitation centres and training of staff. SIRC’s patients have been sleeping outside the rehabilitation centre since the earthquake occurred for fear of the effects of aftershocks.

The collapsed buildings will result in many more people becoming disabled and paralysed. The services of SIRC will be in demand like never before.

In this country we often get caught up in concerns that seem so small when we see the scale of suffering in places like Nepal. We have a reputation for generosity -- if ever there were two organisations that could do with are help, these Fermanagh-based organisations most certainly fit the bill.