How You Can Help: Pakistan Flood 2011
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For the second consecutive year, floods in Pakistan have displaced millions of people, demolished thousands of homes and destroyed acres of crops. As victims' lives are destroyed in front of their eyes, relief organizations have remained on hand to offer money and supplies.
“That so many of those caught up in this emergency were still trying to re-establish their lives after last year’s terrible flooding makes this a very complex and urgent situation,” said Mengesha Kebede, United Nation High Commissioner for Refugees representative in Pakistan, in a press release.
Want to help? Here are some charities that are participating in flood relief efforts.
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
In conjunction with the United Nations appeal for funding, announced Sunday, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) is seeking $33 million to assist flood victims for more than six months. The money will be used to provide 75,000 tents and kits of household relief items, as well as plastic sheets to build emergency shelters, UNHCR said. More than 60,000 families in Sindh province will receive the supplies, as will an additional 5,000 in Balochistan.
Islamic Relief USA
Focused on providing rapid relief in the event of natural disasters, Islamic Relief USA is mobilizing aid teams to deliver vital materials to flood survivors. Some of the resources include food packs, blankets, hygiene kits and temporary shelters.
International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
When the floods hit Sindh province, the Pakistan Red Crescent Society deployed emergency health teams in two districts, servicing nearly 3,000 patients. The organization offered medical attention to victims suffering from malaria, skin infections and other ailments related to contaminated water. It also taught preventative measures, so that patients could avoid contracting such sicknesses in the future. In addition, teams distributed food, tents, blankets and set up a clean drinking water unit.
International humanitarian organization Oxfam is supplying clean water and sanitation to nearly 850,000 people affected by the flooding. The charity is also focused on preventative measures, encouraging the government and donors to invest more in flood-resistant housing and warning systems.
In an attempt to address the onset of injuries and disease, Mercy Corps is deploying two water units, capable of providing clean water to about 12,000 people per day. The organization is also establishing mobile medical clinics that can reach an average of 50 patients a day to provide emergency treatment.
International Fund for Animal Welfare
Humans weren't the only ones affected by the floods. The country's government announced that 64,000 animals have died during the disaster, and the livestock that did survive remains vulnerable to starvation and disease outbreaks. Many of the flood victims are entirely dependent on the upcoming harvest season and animals play a vital role by plowing the fields. As a result, the International Fund for Animal Welfare has partnered with local humanitarian group Ravi Foundation to conduct assessments and initiate relief operations in Pakistan. The organization is also partnering with Wildlife Trust of India to distribute feed and provide veterinary assistance to thousands of impacted animals in the country's eastern state of Orissa after it was hit by monsoons.
Photos: UNHCR/S. Phelps
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