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"Pakistan in Dire need of Humanitarian Aid"

By Shafaq Masud '09

Shafaq for Alumni Newsletter

"The most unbearable site was to see hundreds of dead bodies floating in water near our community."  A comment I received from Irshad - a grieve stricken flood affectee who currently works as a driver at the WWF-P's Pakistan Wetlands Programme.  Irshad represents one of the 20 million people of Pakistan whose village, households, agricultural land and in some cases the entire community have faced the wrath of the worst flood in history of Pakistan since 1929.  He tells me how he found a six-month old baby tied to a sofa cushion floating on water, sleeping without knowing where his family is. This is the story of millions of others who have lost families and have taken shelter under the open sky.

 

Compiled assessment reports from OCHA (The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs), (available at www.pakresponse.info) indicate that more than 50% of the total affected population lacks proper shelters and basic facilities. In addition, waterborne disease, skin infections and snake bites are on the rise. The worst hit areas (districts) in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province have made 70% of local markets non-functional.  Other statistics show, as of 15th August, 2010, over 40,000 people in the Sindh province, 20,000 households in various districts of the Baluchistan province and about 500,000 people in Punjab are in serious need of immediate humanitarian assistance.  The most recent reports, from the same source, state that approximately one million houses have been destroyed. 

 

The loss of infrastructure is just the tip of the iceberg; the full extent of the damage will only be realized after comprehensive assessment surveys being undertaken by a number of local and international organisations. However, preliminary reports indicate that the loss of about 2.3 million standing crops on agricultural land, several thousand livestock, toppled with political instability and weak economy, may severely cripple household food security and livelihoods for years to come.   

 

With low community resilience to natural calamities, the country faces a loss of about 50 years of development as stated in various media interviews with prominent authorities.  To combat such a massive level of destruction we are dire need of international support.  Immediate aid is required in the form of tents, dry ration, clean drinking water, hygiene kits, livestock fodder and medicines. Through this article I would like to reach out to the international community to help rehabilitate the flood affected people of Pakistan. You may provide your donations as follows.

 

For online donations visit the following website for a list of international organisations working for flood relief in Pakistan:

http://developpakistan.org/pakistan-flood-relief/

 

In addition, you may contact the following for donations:

Pukar Foundation (A message from the organization)

 

The vision of PF is to work hand in hand with the people who by no destiny of their own are victims of oppression, injustice, discrimination, destitution, helplessness and above all of social intolerance. Pukar (the cry) of these people is the essence of work of t his foundation with no boundaries of cast, colour creed and religion. 

 

Our foundation is a registered foundation with the government since 2003. From 2003-2005 our income generation program has worked with women in bastees in Islamabad and Pindi. providing them with skills like sewing, cooking, loom embroidery, knitting on machines to help them get better jobs and to encourage cottage industry. 

In the aftermath of 2005 earthquake our foundation worked on relief and rehabilitation in the affected areas. 

Right now we are working in Charsada, Nowshera and Rajjanpur, the worse affected areas by the floods. So far we have been working on provision of WASH and hygiene kits. 

 

Flood Situation.

 

The UN has declared the current floods raging in the country as the biggest natural disaster in the world during the last 100 years. The infrastructure devastation is equivalent to 4 nuclear strikes. 14 million people effected with 30% of the land under water. International aid is being pledged but so far hardly any has made it through. Not enough relief work is being done to help the flood effected people. 1 million homes and belongings have been destroyed, their livestock diminished and their crops washed away by these floods. Generations of hard work has been washed away. Crops, fruit orchids, buildings, homes, roads, bridges even the dams are destroyed. Rehabilitation will take ten to twelve years plus. People are starving to death and with water-borne diseases on the rise the death toll will increase dramatically.

 

Project Goals:

 

To provide immediate and medium term life WASH services in the flood affected areas of Charsada, Nowshera and Rajjanpur for increased resilience and better living conditions. Our goal is to provide these to approximately 200 000 individuals. In response to this disaster PF will be mainly involved in provision of NFIs(non food items), hygiene kits & hygiene education, portable drinking water through water tankering and distribution of bottled water in areas with no access to roads. We have a special focus on women, children and elderly.

 

Contact Details:

Shaheen H James

email: pukar.foundation.trust@gmail.com

phone number: 92 346 5000009
92 333 5399502.
bank account details: 
Pukar Foundation
Bank Alfalah Limited. Islamabad
A/C No 0035-0101 2442
Swift Code ALFHPKKAISL

 

Sustainable Development Policy Institute

Donations to the SDPI may be placed through following account;

Title: Sustainable Development Policy Institute

Account Number: 312041411 – US$ Account

Bank Name: Royal Bank of Scotland

Address: F-7 Markaz, Islamabad, Pakistan

Swift Code: ABNAPKKAISB

 

For further details please contact:

Faisal Nadeem Gorchani

Head, Policy Advocacy and Outreach, SDPI

Tel: (92-51) 227 8134, Ext: 214

Fax: (92-51) 227 8135

Cell: 00-92-333-559 2210

Email: gorchani@sdpi.org

URL: www.sdpi.org


Regular updates on the current situation in Pakistan can be viewed from the following websites:

http://www.pakresponse.info/

www.wwfpk.org

http://pakrelief.crowdmap.com/

http://www.reliefweb.int/rw/dbc.nsf/doc108?OpenForm&emid=FL-2010-000141-PAK&rc=3

http://www.reliefweb.int/rw/fts.nsf/doc105?OpenForm&rc=3&emid=FL-2010-000141-PAK

 

IWC Masters Scholarships

 

 

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