Archive for the ‘swat valley’ tag
ISLAMABAD: The worst floods in memory in Pakistan have devastated the lives of more than three million people so far, a UN spokesman said on Tuesday, and fury over the unpopular government’s response to the crisis is spreading.
The catastrophe, which started almost a week ago and has killed more than 1,400 people, is likely to deepen as more rains are expected and conditions are ripe for the outbreak of disease.
Pakistani authorities are struggling to help flood victims, many of whom have lost everything and say they had not received any warnings raging waters were heading their way.
Anger was palpable in towns such as Charsadda. A Reuters reporter saw people attacking trucks distributing relief items.
Police then charged at them with batons.
Bistma Bibi, 65, who lost two grandsons in the floods, accused state relief workers of only helping friends or relatives.
“I came here at 5 o’clock in the morning. I did my best. I begged and fought but got nothing. They’re giving them (supplies) to their people,” she said.
Unicef spokesman Abdul Sami Malik told Reuters of the more than three million affected, 1.3 million people were severely impacted by the floods in the northwest, losing homes and livelihoods. More than 1,400 have died, he said.
Religious charities, some with suspected ties to militants, have stepped in to provide aid, piling pressure on the government to show it can take control.
“Since the flood hit our area, I did not see any food or relief packets from the government. Their offices have been washed away or damaged,” said school teacher Yar Mohammad, waiting to cross a makeshift bridge over a river in Swat Valley.
Religious groups played a key role in the relief effort following a 2005 earthquake in Kashmir that killed 75,000 people.
Trying times for government
The government faces resilient militants, who often try to capitalise on a lack of civil services to recruit disillusioned Pakistanis to take up arms against the state.
Authorities forecast more of the heavy monsoon rains that have been lashing the area for the past week. Pakistan’s National Disaster Management Authority said more than 29,500 houses were damaged and a key trade highway to China was blocked by flooding.
Waters have receded in some flooded areas. But Unicef’s Malik expressed concern that waters were spreading from the worst hit province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to Pakistan’s Punjab heartland, the major food-producing province, as well as the Sindh region.
Several parts of southern Punjab have been hit by floods.
The army said that 20,000 people have been rescued there.
In the northwest, the bloated, infected carcasses of animals floated on the water, raising the spectre of diseases such as cholera. Food prices are also rising sharply as agriculture has been wiped out, adding to the people’s misery.
“Roads to some districts are no longer there. Coping mechanisms of people are lost because they don’t have any assets to sell to buy food,” said Mohammad Rafiq from Unicef.
Source : dawn news
In response to the damaging floods that struck Pakistan this week, mGive and several of its disaster relief partners quickly mobilized to launch text donation campaigns that will aid victims by distributing tents, relief supplies and humanitarian assistance.
The World Food Programme (WFP) said about 46 of Pakistan’s 135 districts have been affected, and at least 39 health facilities are destroyed. The WFP is working to reach an estimated 250,000 people this week with emergency food supplies. The U.N. refugee agency has distributed 10,000 tents for temporary housing.
For those who want to donate to the relief effort, a simple text message pledges either $5 or $10. To donate:
For Central Asia Institute, text the word CAI to 50555 to give $10. Central Asia Institute provides community-based education opportunities in Pakistan & Afghanistan.
For CHF International, text the word PAKISTAN to 50555 to give $5. CHF International will provide transitional shelter, create livelihoods, and ultimately re-build Pakistan’s economic and social foundations.
For Islamic Society of North America, text the word RELIEF to 27722 to give $10. The Islamic Society of North America contributes to the betterment of the Muslim community and society at large.
For UNHCR, text the word SWAT to 50555 to give $10. UNHCR emergency response teams are distributing tents, relief supplies, and humanitarian assistance to people displaced by the flooding.
For World Food Programme USA, text the word AID to 27722 to give $10. WFP will use helicopters to transport food to people in isolated communities across the Swat Valley.
For World Emergency Relief, text the word RESCUE to 50555 to give $10. Rescue Task Force is a San Diego County based non-profit relief agency that responds to natural and man-made disasters world-wide.
For Zakat Foundation of America, text the work ZAKATUS to 50555 to give $10. Zakat Foundation has begun to address the immediate needs of flood survivors by providing food and clothing in four key Pakistani districts.
As a pioneer and leader in powering mobile donations for nonprofit organizations, mGive enables donors to make small pledges sent by text message.
Mobile Accord’s foundation partner, the mGive Foundation, provides the easiest, fastest and most direct way for people to help. 100 percent of the donations will go to the relief organizations to help those affected by this natural disaster. The text pledge is billed to the donor as part of their monthly phone bill. All donations are tax deductible and receipts can be printed at mGive.org/receipt.
In an address on August 4 explaining the U.S. response to the floods, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton highlighted the power of mobile donations. “I just texted a contribution myself, because we know from our own experience, particularly in Haiti, small donations can add up to make a big difference,” Secretary Clinton said. “Americans have always shown great generosity to people facing crises worldwide. So I urge Americans to join this effort and send some much needed help to the people of Pakistan.”
The mobile donation campaigns for relief to Haiti after the January earthquake highlighted the powerful potential of mobile technology to help relieve human suffering. Conducted by charitable organizations and powered by mGive, the campaigns raised have more than $41 million since the earthquake struck Haiti.
“We continue to be awed by the generosity of everyday Americans,” said James Eberhard, CEO of mGive. “During the relief efforts for Haiti, millions of first time donors contributed to the efforts, showing how small donations can make a big difference for those in need. Pakistan needs our help now, and a simple text to donate $5 or $10 can make a difference at a critical time.”
About Mobile Accord / mGive
Mobile Accord is the innovator and leader in mobile technology for nonprofit organizations, powering mobile donations in the United States. Founded in 2005, Mobile Accord was the first company in the U.S. to offer mobile tools specifically built for nonprofit organizations. Mobile Accord serves more than 400 leading U.S. philanthropic organizations and has raised more 95% of all funds raised via mobile giving. The mGive Foundation is the charitable partner of Mobile Accord