How to help the victims of the floods in Pakistan

Floods caused by torrential monsoon rains have claimed more than 1,100 lives in Pakistan since June, while leaving millions stranded and desperate for immediate help.

Pakistan has received almost three times the national average of 30 years this season. A third of the nation’s land is under water, and more than 33 million Pakistanis, almost 14 percent of the population, have been affected by the ongoing deluge, according to the United Nations and the National Management Authority. of Pakistan Disasters.

Some 735,000 head of livestock have been lost and more than 2 million acres of farmland damaged, a significant cost to Pakistan’s agricultural sector, which accounts for nearly a fifth of the nation’s GDP and employs more than a third of the country’s workers.

Pakistan’s top climate official, Sherry Rehman, has called the crisis a “climate-induced humanitarian disaster of epic proportions.”

“Pakistan was already facing the disastrous effects of climate change,” Rehman told a news conference on Thursday. “Now, the most devastating monsoon rains in a decade are causing unrelenting destruction across the country.”

A flood victim shelters along a road in a makeshift tent in Mehar.

A flood victim shelters along a road in a makeshift tent, following rains and floods during the monsoon season in Mehar, Pakistan, August 29, 2022. Photo by REUTERS/Akhtar Soomro

“Let’s stop sleepwalking towards the destruction of our planet by climate change,” UN Secretary-General António Guterres said Tuesday in a request for $160 million in aid. “Today, it is Pakistan. Tomorrow, it could be your country.”

Guterres urged the international community to “step up solidarity and support the people of Pakistan in their hour of need.” The funds would help provide food, water, sanitation, emergency education, protection and health services to 5.2 million people.

USAID also announced Tuesday that it would send an additional $30 million in humanitarian assistance to Pakistan. The United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund already approved $3 million last week for urgent health, food security, water, sanitation and nutrition services in the areas affected by the floods. The money will go to help a estimated 90,000 Pakistanis who have been the most affected.

Meanwhile, the Pakistani government has pledged to make payments to every family affected by the floods in Sindh, Baluchistan, Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces. Under the Flood Relief Cash Assistance program, more than 6 billion rupees, roughly equivalent to $74.7 million, have already been given to more than 250,000 families.

As the flood-ravaged country awaits more help from around the world, here are some ways you can contribute.

Flood victims stand by their tents after taking shelter in Mehar.

Flood victims stand by their tents after taking shelter, following rains and floods during the monsoon season in Mehar, Pakistan, August 29, 2022. Photo by REUTERS/Akhtar Soomro

How to help

UNICEF is seeking donations to provide health services, water and hygiene kits to the victims of the floods in the country.

The Pakistan Red Crescent Society is monitoring the response and soliciting donations. The organization runs seven provincial and 92 district branches in Pakistan.

The International Medical Corps has reportedly provided enough medical supplies for at least 4,500 patients in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and is distributing water purification tablets to combat the spread of waterborne diseases. You can offer financial support here.

The non-profit Alkhidmat Foundation Pakistan has launched an emergency flood relief appeal to buy food, tents and tarpaulins, as well as fund medical camps. Overseas donations can be made through its international partners, including Aghosh USA and Aghosh UK.

Muslim Aid Pakistan established its own emergency flood fund with the support of Muslim Aid UK, USA and Start Network. The non-governmental organization says it has helped 29,325 Pakistanis so far.

Pakistani cricketer Shahid Afridi’s foundation, established in 2014, has set up a relief operation in the country’s Baluchistan province. Its flood relief campaigns have helped more than 4,000 households in Sindh and Baluchistan provinces by distributing food rations and overseeing a medical camp, according to the organization’s website.

How to avoid charity scams

  • Determine if the organization, nonprofit, or group has a proven track record of providing help to those in need.
  • Identify local initiatives and efforts that are based in the areas most affected by the natural disaster.
  • Beware of phone calls and emails soliciting donations.
  • Avoid unknown agencies and websites. There is a history of scammers creating websites that look like donation pages after a major tragedy, but were actually scams.

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