Urgent appeal to support flood affectees in Pakistan

Villagers struggle to save their livestock, Badin, 2011. Photo: courtesy Dawn

Over a million people have been displaced by current floods in Pakistan. Please read the urgent appeal below from friend Abdulrahman (aka AR or Abbey), Founder & Coordinator, SA Relief, aiming to provide flood affected people at a camp in Badin with cooked meals for the next 15 days (email pkfloods@sarelief.com). Just 25 USD will feed a family of four for one week. Read on, and please help: Continue reading

‘In the political tug of war it’s the poor and helpless that hurt the most’

Medical camp in a village near Dadu, Sindh

“I, an American, a New Yorker used to the harsh winter and snowy weather yet, I am freezing in Pakistan. My heart goes out to those suffering the cold winter without shelter, blankets, clothing. May God provide you with his soldiers to keep fighting for the injustices meted out to you. May we all be able to look beyond the differences and reach out a helping hand.” – Geet Chainani, Dec 15, 2010

My article on an Indian-American doctor who comes to Pakistan in search of her Sindhi roots… and finds a sense of peace working for flood-affected women and children, published in Aman ki Asha, March 2, 2011 (as another Indian put it – “not Akhand Bharat, but Akhand Insaniyat”) Continue reading

Donate a breeding goat to a flood refugee this Eid

Not everyone was able to save their precious goats (AFP: Arif Ali)

The flood waters are receding but the needs of the flood refugees and survivors remains enormous. Blogger Farrukh Siddiqui summarises the main needs in this post  How can We Help flood victims in Pakistan

Here’s another way to help them: donate a live breeding goat to help them re-start their lives in a sustainable way.

At least two organisations I know of are working on this novel idea: Pakistan Animal Welfare Society and Sadiqa Salahuddin’s Indus Resource Centre (IRC) which has a long history of working on education (especially of girls) in the Khairpur area of Sindh.
Continue reading

PMA briefing re floods: medical, social, health issues

Dr Sher Shah Syed. Photo: Jamal Ashiqain

ALL ARE INVITED

Pakistan Medical Association (PMA) information session:

Ø Installation of 21 water purification plants for internally displaced persons (IDPs): Experience; Hurdles;  Successes Dr. Waqar Qurieshy, UK
ØLife in IDP Camps, Rehabilitation and Future Dr. Shershah Syed/ Dr. Kiran Ejaz
Ø Plans for Rehabilitation & SOG Dr Nighat Shah
Ø PMA Flood Relief Activities Dr. Samrina Hashmi

Monday, September 20th, 2010,
3:00 pm
PMA House, Garden Road, Karachi (MAP)

IRC’s Khairpur and Hyderabad camps: Eid report by Sadiqa Salahuddin

Eid distribution at IRC camp - Sadiqa Salahuddin (in cap)

Sadiqa Salahuddin, a dear family friend, has been working in the Khairpur area for over a decade, providing education to children there (mostly girls) through her Indus Resource Centre (IRC). Since the floods hit, they have turned their energies towards relief work.

Here’s an update from her, received this morning, about Eid, the festival that marks the end of the month of fasting, in the IRC camps:

September 14, 2010
Dear Friends,

Eid in a Tent City was a unique experience of my life. I do not remember seeing so many happy faces around on Eid as I saw this year. This might seem contrary to what we are hearing and watching on television about the deprivation and gloom among internally displaced persons (IDPs) on Eid. I have no doubt about media portraying realities but what I am saying is real too. A young journalist has captured Eid in our Tent City in Tribune. Please see this report Learning to say ‘I love you’ Continue reading

Transparency for Flood Donations – Isa Daudpota

From longtime friend, activist, media-watcher and accountability-demander Isa Daudpota in Islamabad:

Transparency for Flood Donations

Q. Isa Daudpota

Pakistanis and foreign donors recoil at the general lack of credibility of the government and other institutions when it comes to proper utilization of funds.  It is important that this perception is removed quickly if one is to move beyond the immediate relief funding for the flood, which will dwarf in comparison with long-term rehabilitation of people and infrastructure restoration. Continue reading

Personal Political: A flood of despair, a trickle of hope

About a fifth of Pakistan is under water. BBC graphic, Aug 25, 2010

Karachi, Aug 24, 2010 – my monthly column, written three weeks into the most devastating floods Pakistan has ever known, and shortly after India’s aid offer of $5 million to help flood-affected Pakistan, published in The News on Sunday (Aug 31) and Hardnews, India (Sept 1). India later upped the offer by $20 million.
Explaining the decision to the Lok Sabha (Parliament) on Aug 31, External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna said in his speech, “We cannot remain unconcerned with this grave humanitarian crisis of enormous magnitude in our immediate neighbourhood.”

PERSONAL POLITICAL: A flood of despair, a trickle of hope

Beena Sarwar

July 28, 2010 was a bad day for Pakistan. That morning, heavy rains led to a private airline plane crashing into the Margalla hills near Islamabad, killing all 152 on board. The rains also brought the most devastating floods in living memory.

That day, I and a few Pakistani water experts landed in Delhi for a closed-door seminar on water as an issue that causes tensions between India and Pakistan, organised by the Centre for Dialogue and Reconciliation and Aman ki Asha where I work. By the time we returned home on July 31, the floods had claimed 500 lives in northern Pakistan and left thousands homeless. Continue reading

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