Monsoon Floods in Pakistan & throughout Asia


Last update by @viequesbound 8-13-2010

Worsening Conditions in Pakistan’s Flood Zone Threaten Well-Being of Children

Save the Children Works to Reach Affected Families, Provide Critical Health and Other Assistance

WESTPORT, Conn. (August 13, 2010) — Unprecedented monsoon rains in Pakistan have triggered a massive humanitarian crisis that threatens the lives and well-being of millions of people in the floodwaters’ path, particularly young children.

Save the Children, which over the last two weeks has provided assistance to more than 37,800 children and adults, is fighting difficult conditions to reach families in need and assist them through this latest crisis. Of particular concern is the health of the floods’ youngest survivors.

“The massive displacement of people, potential for the spread of disease and deteriorating living conditions are increasing risks to very vulnerable infants and children,” said Mohammed Qazilbash, Save the Children’s spokesperson in Pakistan. “Our medics are seeing cases of pneumonia, diarrhea and malaria — major killers of children in the developing world under normal conditions. So we are working around the clock to provide critical health services and support to parents so that they can take care of their children.”

Shelter materials reaching many, but needs and protection concerns remain significant

ISLAMABAD, 13 August 2010 (UNHCR) – The UN Refugee Agency has urgently purchased more than 69,000 tents from local suppliers to assist with Pakistan’s massive flooding crisis with at least 8,000 tents now arriving each week, but stocks of plastic tarpaulin which currently stand at 160,000 sheets are being rapidly depleted due to the enormous shelter requirements throughout flood-stricken Pakistan.

“We want to warn everyone that the crisis facing Pakistan is enormous,” said Mengesha Kebede, UNHCR representative. “There continues to be massive destruction as the bloated rivers flow inexorably southwards across the plains.”

To date, UNHCR has distributed shelter material to help more than 330,000 people. The agency is seeking to urgently restock shelter materials and family kits from its global stockpiles as it strives to get supplies into isolated areas of Pakistan, particularly Balochistan and Khyber Pakthunkhwa provinces.

UNHCR is initially appealing for $41 million to provide help to 560,000 people (80,000 families) affected by the disaster including Afghan refugees, some 100,000 IDPs from Swat, and Pakistani host communities.

“This crisis will not be over when the flood waters recede. We believe that many more communities and refugee camps will literally surface, homes destroyed or very seriously damaged, with hunger and illness exposing in particular women and children to grave situations,” Kebede declared.

Five truckloads of UNHCR relief items that were dispatched from Peshawar to Quetta more than a week ago are still trapped by landslides and flooding in Bhakar district, with only four trucks successfully passing the flooded routes.

Due to the lack of aid in Balochistan, UNHCR is looking into airlifting supplies into Balochistan, which Pakistan’s Prime Minister visited yesterday. UNHCR is leading the relief effort in Balochistan, and has so far sent 3,000 all-weather family tents, 5,000 plastic tarpaulins as well as thousands of kitchen sets, jerry cans, buckets, sleeping mats blankets quilts to affected communities in Sibi, Jaffarabad and Nasirabad districts.

The agency is gravely concerned with the protection needs of all those people displaced by the flooding, especially women and children who are particularly vulnerable and who lack satisfactory community support structures after being displaced from their homes.

“We are working to address protection and shelter needs amongst Afghan refugees, conflict-related displaced persons and Pakistani communities ravaged by the on-going flooding crisis, but this crisis is massive, rapidly depleting our stockpiles as we struggle to meet the enormous needs amidst ongoing security concerns,” said Kebede.

UNHCR has established protection teams in northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province focusing on the three hardest-hit districts, Nowshera, Charsadda and Peshawar and similar efforts are underway in Balochistan province.

Provincial authorities in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province told UNHCR that 653 schools are currently occupied by flood affected people. Some schools have as many as 10 families per room. UNHCR is very concerned for the protection needs of women and children in these crowded locations due to health and hygiene and the threat of sexual violence or other abuse.

UNHCR took part yesterday in a helicopter flyover of Mianwali in Punjab Province, which has hosted more than 18,000 Afghan refugees for three decades and also to Dera Ismail Khan in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, where some 300,000 displaced people from last year’s conflict reside. Both areas also shelter large numbers of flood-affected Pakistani communities.

Vast areas of the countryside were seen to be devastated and under water. The helicopter was unable to land in Multan due to the continued flooding in the Punjab.

In Khyber Pakhtunkh wa Province, authorities report that 78 refugee camps across 17 districts were overwhelmed by the flooding, erasing more than 12,600 homes, leaving 85,800 refugees homeless. Many tens of thousands of homes both of refugees and Pakistanis throughout the stricken province have been seriously damaged. Their inhabitants, particularly vulnerable, women, children and older persons, will be given priority for safe, temporary shelter and emergency food and medical assistance in coordination with UNHCR partners.

The UNHCR items distributed to people devastated by flooding so far include more than 17,000 all-weather family tents and 43,700 plastic sheets, as well as family kits to replace lost items, including 103,000 blankets/quilts, 59,000 sleeping mats, 60,000 jerry cans and buckets, 18,500 kitchen sets, 18 MT soap and 25,000 mosquito nets.


IFRC launches emergency appeal for floods in Pakistan

dated 2 August 2010

As the north-western provinces of Pakistan continue to suffer from the effects of severe flooding caused by torrential monsoon rains, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) has launched a preliminary international appeal for 17,008,050 Swiss francs (16,333,000 US dollars or 12,514,600 euros) in support of emergency relief activities undertaken by the Pakistan Red Crescent Society. The IFRC appeal will enable the Red Crescent relief operation to reach 25,000 families (175,000 people) in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab and Sindh provinces, as well as part of North West Frontier Province. Assistance will also be channelled to Red Crescent medical teams who are on the ground treating a range of ailments including injuries, skin infections and respiratory problems.

According to official sources, 2.5 million people have been affected by the floods. The situation for thousands of people who have lost homes, livelihoods and possessions remains precarious and relief efforts must be scaled up to meet the growing humanitarian needs. Many affected communities have still not been reached and further rains are forecast in the coming days.

“The next week is critical. With further heavy rains there is a real danger that the flooding will spread further south into Sindh province,” explains Mr Ateeb Siddiqui, Director of Operations with the Pakistan Red Crescent Society. “As well as increasing distributions of food and shelter materials, the Red Crescent is working to reduce the public health risks posed by the flooding. Thousands of people are living in miserable conditions. Providing clean water and sanitation is an absolute priority if we are to avert a public health disaster,” adds Mr Siddiqui.

Since the flooding first began in Baluchistan province more than ten days ago, the Red Crescent has been distributing food and other relief items such as tents, tarpaulins, blankets and cooking stoves to families across the worst affected districts of Pakistan’s five flood-stricken provinces. Many of these families have been forced from their homes and have been left with no means of support.

In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, the flooding is being reported as the worst in living memory. More than 800 people are believed to have died and with road links severed and many bridges collapsed, the Red Crescent is making every effort to bring relief supplies to people in areas that remain cut off.

For the above translation in French or Spanish, please see the IFRC website.

For further information, or to set up interviews, please contact:

In Pakistan:
Majda Shabir, Communications Officer, IFRC
Tel: +92 51 9250 4167
Mobile: +92 32 2537 1994

In Kuala Lumpur:
Patrick Fuller, Communications Manager, IFRC
Tel: +60 12 230 8451

In Geneva:
Marie-Françoise Borel, Communications Officer, IFRC
Tel. +41 22 730 4346


Catholic Relief Services is currently organizing shipments of humanitarian aid to Balochistan, one of the affected areas. They are also sending emergency shelter kits and hygiene supplies to other flood-affected regions in Pakistan. Donations to their Emergency Relief fund are being accepted online and by phone at 1-800-736-3467.

Concern Emergency Teams are responding to the Pakistan Emergency Flood Appeal. They are working to provide about 9,000 families with kitchen sets and hygiene kits, clean water, temporary sanitation, and dry rations of food. Online donations can be made in dollars, euros and pounds.

Church World Service is distributing food packages and shelter material for flood-affected families in Balochistan, Khan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, as well as mobilizing a health unit to offer emergency medical assistance in Mansehra. Your donation can be made online and by phone at 1-800.297-1516.

International Committee of the Red Cross continues to distribute relief supplies to over 7,000 flood victims in Balochistan. The ICRC and its partners are finalizing medical contingency plans for flood-affected areas, and for repairing critical water infrastructure. You contribute by making a donation in numerous currencies online.

International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies are performing rapid needs assessments in affected areas and distributing food coupons and other relief items including tents, hygiene kits, tarpaulin sheets and kerosene stoves. They have also set up a medical camp in Sultan to offer immediate medical aid to affected families. You can help now by making an online donation.

Islamic Relief USA is providing food and water for 700 families In Noshara, distributing emergency supplies and working with the United Nations World Food Program to distribute food to 2,000 families in Bakhtiarabad. Islamic Relief has launched a campaign to aid the victims of the floods, which you can support by making an online donation.

Oxfam Great Britain is looking to provide the needed temporary shelter, clean drinking water and toilets to help avert a public health catastrophe. They are accepting online donations in pounds, euros and dollars, and can be reached by telephone internationally at +44 (0) 1865 47 2602. In England, you can text ‘DONATE’ to 70066 to make a donation of 5 pounds to their Pakistan Floods Appeal.

ShelterBox distributed hundreds of ShelterBoxes to families rescued from the flood in the Punjab and Khyber Pukhtunkhwa (KPK) regions. Find out how to become part of the ShelterBox Team or help the efforts by making an online donation in the UK and the US.

UNICEF‘s Pakistan office is providing assistance for water and sanitation, health, and nutrition. They are distributing clean water and water purification tablets to prevent water-borne diseases and will continue to asses the situation to determine if further fundraising appeal is needed. If you are interested in becoming a UNICEF volunteer click here or support flood-relief efforts by making an online donation.

World Food Programme is making food distributions to 35,000 families affected by the flooding in Northwestern Pakistan. WFP Pakistan plans to assist up to 150,000 families over the next few months as access to the affected areas improves. You can help by making an online donation in either euros, dollars, pounds or yens.

World Vision is working to distribute food and clean water to the affected communities in Pakistan. They have created the World Vision’s Flood Relief Fund which you can support it by making an online donation.

Operation Blessing International is sending emergency medical relief teams to Peshawar, Pakistan. Working with their disaster relief partner charity Humedica, OBI will offer medical treatment and distribute food, clean drinking water and emergency building supplies to thousands in need from this flood. Support for OBI’s disaster relief efforts can be made online or by calling 1-800-730-2537

Too read more programs doing other charitable work in Pakistan, please see CNN


Villages still cut off from aid in Pakistan
04 Aug 2010 17:11:56 GMT

Source: ActionAid
Reuters and AlertNet are not responsible for the content of this article or for any external internet sites. The views expressed are the author’s alone.

Clean drinking water and food continue to be the priority in Pakistan’s flood-stricken North West, as ActionAid mobilises its disaster response.Zia Naweb, an ActionAid partner working in Swat, says the situation remains precarious for tens of thousands of villagers in the Swat Valley disconnected from aid due to damaged roads and bridges. “Distributing aid to victims in hilly areas will be a challenge due to wiped-out infrastructure. Helicopters are operating but are in short supply, and delivering supplies on foot will be problematic due to long distances between villages, danger of flash flooding and the amount of debris scattered everywhere.”“Villages have been completely destroyed – the extent of the disaster hit me after assessing twin villages Qandle and Jaro. You would never believe that these villages even existed, all that remains of them is sand and debris, and so much livestock has already disappeared,” He says.What is ActionAid doing?
ActionAid is reaching thousands of those most in need, with:

  • food packages
  • fodder for livestock
  • mattresses, mosquito nets and plastic sheets for those without shelter
  • household  basics  like hygiene kits, tarpaulins and kitchen sets.

We are working closely with government authorities, military personnel and other humanitarian organisations to ensure that the aid arrives where the need is greatest


***In a catastrophic event, focus on 3 things.  You may be in shock.  Try not to be distracted by noise, confusion.

1. Survive:  Stay Safe, Treat Wounds.  Press this button to find hospitals and First Aid locations within the affected area.

2. Sustain:  Find Water, Food, and Shelter.  Water is most important.  Press this button to find Shelters and aid locations.

3. Reunite:  Find Loved Ones.  Press this button to search the  people finder tool and register yourself on the “safe” lists.

This website contains important information to help those impacted by a catastrophic event find the aid they need.  A team of volunteers around the world is constantly updating this information so that you know where to go and whom to call when you begin the road to recovery.

Along the top are pages to help you find hospitals, and treat wounds, and see where shelter and other urgent aid material may be found.  The right side of this screen shows additional links for those who would like more detailed information about areas most heavily impacted.

A catastrophic disaster is much different than other types of disasters.  In any average disaster, people and property are severely impacted but recovery is relatively fast. Aid agencies are on-site or in contact with impacted persons within a few days.  In a catastrophic disaster, hundreds of thousands or millions of people are impacted. The geography impacted may be hundreds of miles in diameter.  In such a case, it may be weeks until aid reaches those affected.

The information you see here is easy to find, but the research behind knowing what to tell the public at this time of need and how to display it in any easy to read manner is the result of 11 years of analyzing, responding to, and learning from how the public reacts in times of widespread need in the United States (9/11, Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Ike).

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