October 6, 2011

Updated emergency appeal: Pakistan (Sindh) flooding

APPEAL # 699-Z
AMOUNT: $1,723,229
Funding Received to Date: $90,000

Situation:

Some 300 people have died from three months of flooding in Sindh, Pakistan, a disaster that has destroyed some 400,000 homes and has left a trial of serious diseases in its wake, with hundreds of thousands suffering from hepatitis and malaria. More than a half million people are living in shelters. The floods are retracing an area affected by floods last year; all but two of Sindh's 24 provinces have been flooded.

“The unmet needs in Sindh are a tragedy waiting to happen," said Allan Calma, deputy director of CWS's Pakistan disaster management program, reacting to calls by the United Nations that more must be done by the international community to assist Pakistan's survivors, noting that the UN's appeal for Pakistan is only 6 percent funded.

"The high prevalence of poverty in Sindh exacerbates the challenges of overcoming this disaster," he said. "The destruction of agricultural crops and loss of significant livelihoods means these communities have little or no resources with which to restart their lives. The international community, which has assisted Pakistan in their times of need, must once again come forward to help the millions of affected families.”

The UN and its humanitarian partners, such as CWS, have provided emergency shelter, medicines and consultations, food, and safe drinking water to hundreds of thousands of flood survivors. But the UN has said if more funding is not received food stocks will run out within one month, safe drinking water supply in a few weeks, contingency stocks of emergency shelter will last only a few weeks, and one-third of the affected population could be without medical care in a month’s time.

Little has changed since CWS first issued this appeal Sept. 17: With the loss of farm fields and livestock, families have lost their sources of income to buy food. Exacerbating the problem: lack of adequate access to health facilities is only worsening the problems such as malaria, and food and drinking water shortages already prevalent in rural Sindh.

"With an increasing number of disasters resulting in huge economic and social losses, the global community must do more to help the most vulnerable communities so that they can become more resilient and better prepared to deal with natural hazards, thus, reducing the financial strain on global disaster response," CWS Pakistan-based staff said Sept. 30. "Aside from meeting the immediate needs for communities and countries like Pakistan facing the brunt of these natural disasters, greater effort must be made for alleviating poverty through sustainable development and rehabilitation that emphasize disaster preparedness and risk reduction."

CWS continues its appeal so that it and the humanitarian community in Pakistan may help address the immediate needs of millions displaced and affected by this year’s floods. "The cost of slow response is greater suffering and losses," CWS staff in Pakistan said. "Continued slow response will lead to a tragedy of death, suffering, hunger, malnutrition, and abject poverty."

CWS response:

As part of a coordinated response by members of the ACT Alliance, Church World Service is responding to the floods in Pakistan. This initial appeal has covered the early CWS response, which includes providing food and non-food items (including food packages, kitchen sets, mosquito nets and sleeping mats), shelter kits, hygiene kits and health services.

The core of the CWS response is in assisting 48,000 affected individuals in four districts: Badin, Thatta, Umerkot, and Mirpurkhas. The relief assistance comprises food packages for 2,000 families for two months, non-food items and temporary shelter for 4,000 families, and mobile health services to 12,000 individuals.

The food items being distributed are 1 month rations/food packages that include wheat flour (80 kg); rice (30 kg); cooking oil (4.5 liters); pulses (14 kg); tea leaves (400 grams); salt (800 grams); and baby food (375 grams).

The non-food items being distributed include matchboxes, jerry cans, plastic buckets, mosquito nets and sleeping mats.

The food rations are 577 metric tons of food, made possible due to the support of the Canadian Food Grains Bank through Presbyterian World Service and Development.

CWS staff based in Pakistan continue active coordination at the national and local levels. CWS emergency response team members are conducting assessments, preparing for distributions, and ensuring quality and accountability of the planned response.

Budget:

$1,723,229, which includes $1,657,803 for total direct assistance, including $1,591,176 for food and non-food items and $66,626 for the provision of health services.

(Additional details of the response)

NOTE: CWS Pakistan staff has issued an alert through ACT Alliance regarding an outbreak of Dengue fever in Punjab Province, Pakistan. CWS is monitoring the situation and plans to provide prevention kits, as well as awareness raising sessions in the communities. At this time, this response is not part of this appeal related to the floods in Sindh. Additional details.

HOW TO HELP: Contributions to support CWS emergency response efforts may be made online, sent to your denomination, or to Church World Service, P.O. Box 968, Elkhart, IN 46515.

Church World Service is a member of the ACT Alliance, a global coalition of churches and agencies engaged in development, humanitarian assistance and advocacy.