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Pakistan in the Midst of its Worst-Ever Natural Disaster – Appeals to International Community

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The current Pakistan floods disaster is being described as having affected more people than the Haiti earthquake of 2010 and the Tsumani of 2004 combined. The scale of the disaster is so widespread that it is now emerging as the worst natural disaster to ever hit the South Asian nation.

The flooding started due to the heavy July monsoon rains which continued unabated for more than a week. As a result Pakistan’s North-West province of Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa (KPK) is now severely affected with flooding which has spread from the Swat Valley in the North to the nearby provinces of Punjab and Sindh in the South. Please see a map of the flood-affected regions and degree of help required.

Some numbers to highlight the gravity of the situation: 15 million people affected. More than 1300 deaths. Over 700,000 houses damaged or swept away. 6 million children affected. 2.7 million children in need of urgent life-saving assistance. And some 1.8 million people homeless. See Pakistan’s flood in pictures.

Talking about the relief efforts, UNICEF’s representative in Pakistan, Martin Mogwanja said “It is a race against time as we rush to deliver supplies to affected populations. The waters are still rising and we are bracing for flood waves as rivers overflow and the rains continue…Shelter is the most urgent need, while food, water, and health care are also critical.”

The Pakistani flood victims are in dire need of help in the following areas: staple foods such as rice, sugar, oil, drinking water; medicines to combat water-borne diseases and treat the injured; clothes, tents, utensils and toiletries to help maintain hygienic conditions and keep people safe. Oxfam’s country director in Pakistan, Neva Khan, said “This is the biggest disaster in the world right now and we all need to get behind it."

Pakistan has reached out to the international community for aid. If you would like to help, there are many international and local relief organizations putting together care packages and offering emergency services; they would greatly benefit from your help.

International organizations:

UNICEF: UNICEF’s emergency relief services are providing much-needed assistance to the children worst-affected by this disaster.

Actionaid: Action aid is geared towards helping the people of Swat and KPK recover from the flood damage and is also paying special attention in evacuating AIDS and HIV sufferers, children and elderly, people with disabilities, as well as religious minorities affected by the disaster.

Islamic Relief USA: This organization is actively involved in aiding evacuations from flood-affected areas, setting up camps and transporting basic aid supplies to the flood sufferers.

Red Cross: The American Red Cross has donated $100,000 to help people affected by flooding with food, water, shelter, and sanitation and healthcare services. It plans to donate more to provide emergency shelter and kitchen utensils to 5000 families across the flood-affected areas.

You can also text the word SWAT to 50555 to donate $10 per SMS to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. The money will go towards providing shelter, clean food and water as well as medicines to Pakistanis affected by the monsoon floods.

Please visit Interaction.org for the full list of international organizations helping Pakistan’s flood affected people.

Pakistani Organizations:


SA Relief: Simply click ChipIn and donate via PayPal. This organization’s efforts are being collected by Pakistan Science & Engineering Foundation, a 501(c)(3) registered California based not-for-profit organization, EIN# 20-2950808.

Insaf.pk: This is Imran Khan’s website where you can donate either via PayPal or wire transfer. If you reside in the Middle East, this site gives a list of official personnel to contact for relief efforts.

Edhi Foundation: This is Pakistan’s premiere welfare organization with local offices in the US, UK, Canada, Japan, Australia and Bangladesh.

Sungi Development Foundation: This NGO is aiding in clearing roads so vehicles carrying relief goods may reach the people affected by flood waters.

TCF: The Citizens Foundation is a non-profit that’s pledged to provide 20 million meals to flood affected families. It has an online donation option.

The imminent fear is that as the flood waters continue moving south and more torrential rains are forecasted, further embankments will flood and more regions will be inundated, causing displacement, loss of livestock and crops. Therefore Pakistan urgently needs all the support it can get, not just for the immediate basic needs but also for continued rehabilitation and re-building.

 

About the Author:
Salma Jafri is the head of WordPL, an online content creation company that specializes in article writing, web content, blogs, press releases, and more. You can find out more about her and her company on her Elance profile located here.

Comments

It will take a long time for Pakistan to come out of the grave effects of this flood. Many people have already died during this deadly flood and many more are dying daily because they are without food and clean water. Last night, a Pakistani news channel was reporting that 15 children died yesterday because of the lack of food and water. This could have happened anywhere - it is a natural disaster. Please donate your funds to save innocent lives. Thanks!

Pakistan Floods - A Torrent "For" the Militants?

By writefrenzy

The recent floods in Pakistan have inundated and devastated almost 1/5th of the nation leaving nearly 20 million people homeless and exposed to water-borne diseases.

These were the first such floods in almost 80 years affecting more people than the Haitian earthquake of 2010, the Indian Ocean Tsunami of 2004 and the Pakistan-controlled Kashmir earthquake of 2005 put together.

Why did it take so long for the international community to release relief assistance to Pakistan? Aid would have been dispatched immediately if it had been some South American country or another or, say, for instance, India.

The flood victims are in severe need of basic amenities. They need clothes, blankets, shelter, food, fresh drinking water, medicine as basic hygiene is almost next to none.

Pakistan is urging international donor agencies to send more aid to address the calamity it is struck with. The international community must do more in this hour of need.

Let’s not make the aid just trickle in, let it torrent!

But there’s another more sinister danger lurking.

The United States and Pakistan have asked the world community to come forward in the nation’s hour of need to help prevent communal unrest resulting from these floods.

US Senator John Kerry, who heads the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and co-authored a record 7.5-billion-dollar aid bill for Pakistan, is in Pakistan these days to witness the floods first hand and is the first US politician to visit since the disaster struck.

Along with President Asif Ali Zardari, Kerry said on Thursday the world must act now to stop militants from exploiting this situation to prevent social unrest.

There is well-founded fear that this could be an opportunity for militants to take orphaned babies and put them in terror training camps creating future terrorists.