Handicap International has opened two new bases in Pakistan to deliver emergency aid to the worst-affected populations, following the severe flooding which has devastated the country since 1st August. According to the UN, 18 million people have been affected by the floods, which have covered an area two thirds the size of the UK.
So far, more than 115,000 people have benefited from Handicap International’s emergency activities in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, northwest Pakistan. We are now expanding our operations through two new bases, one in Sindh province in the south of the country, and one in the district of Tank (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa).
Handicap International’s new base in Sindh province is located in the district of Thatta, near Karachi. The situation in the region is very precarious and so far the people of Sindh have received little emergency relief, as few organisations are currently operating there.
“Our new base in Sindh allows us to provide access to clean drinking water to the many displaced people in the region who are waiting to return home”, explains Stéphane Lobjois, Head of Mission in Pakistan for Handicap International. “Many of them will find little of their previous life left behind. It’s also vital to take action to limit the spread of epidemics. These people are the last to be affected by the wave of floodwater as it moves towards the sea.”
Since the floods struck northwest Pakistan, Handicap International has been providing emergency relief in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, particularly in the cities of Kohat and Mingora, the district of Swat, and in rural areas. In the same province, the district of Tank has been particularly badly hit and our new base there will allow us to help the population in this area, who are in urgent need of support.
As winter arrives and the weather starts to get colder, Handicap International is planning the distribution of cold-weather survival kits, containing blankets and warm clothing, to displaced populations.