The impact of the 2010 massive floods that submerged one-fifth of Pakistan, left 20 million homeless, killed 2,000 and destroyed millions of acres of crops is still painfully evident today -- especially in remote villages. Many families in these farming communities lost everything and have little access to relief and recovery efforts.
As part of our commitment to help communities rebuild sustainable health care following a disaster, AmeriCares is working to rehabilitate 10 flood-damaged health facilities to restore crucial health care services to Pakistan’s villages.
At the same time, we continue to keep our promise by delivering crucial aid to families in need. Relief worker Riaz Khalil works tirelessly with village elders to identify needs and coordinates with partners to distribute relief items. Many elders explained that these important AmeriCares distributions are the only non-food items that their people have received since the disaster.
Relief packs include some or all of the following: a quilt, cooking set, plastic mat, clothing, water cooler, hygiene supplies and toothbrushes – small but important items in places where most of the furniture is destroyed, homes are badly damaged or completely destroyed, power is cut off at night, and fresh water is difficult to find and store.
Help and Hope for Pakistan’s Villages
Relief packs were distributed to 255 families in this Swat River village that was nearly washed away entirely after suffering a direct hit from floodwaters.
“The joint family system is very strong in this area -- married brothers still live with their families in one compound with one kitchen,” explained Riaz. “In all, nearly 500 families benefited from the distribution.”
In this once-bustling village near the banks of the Nowshera River, much of the potable water supply had been damaged in the floods, posing a serious health risk to the community, especially young children. In addition to quilts, hygiene kits and cooking sets for 800 village families, AmeriCares delivered a well and community hand pump, ensuring that hundreds of students in the nearby school have access to clean water, and benefiting 40 nearby homes in this recovering community.
A Pir Sabaq village elder thanked AmeriCares for the well and pump, saying "See the girls' smiling faces. They are very happy to have clean water near their school."
Prior to the floods, Mohkum Shah was a fishing village situated between the Kabul and Swat rivers. Floods devastated the infrastructure and economy. Working with village elders and collaborating with the Sabawoon Welfare Foundation, AmeriCares distributed relief items to 60 families.
One of the village elders stated that this was the first non-food distribution the village had received.
Nearly 90 percent of the homes were completely destroyed in this isolated fishing village Very little reconstruction has occurred since the flooding. Working with partner, Sabawoon Welfare Foundation and the village elders, 200 families received a water cooler, cooking sets and plastic mats.
“AmeriCares is the only organization who arranged any distribution, and it was done in just two weeks time! The village of Awan will always remember you,” said Mr. Tajuddin, the head of the village elders.