Pakistan is going through one of the biggest disasters in its history. More than 455 people have lost their lives while more than one million people were affected by the recent floods in the south of the country.
The floods damaged the country’s economy as it hit mostly the agriculture and animal catering sectors. Pakistanis try to live under very difficult circumstances.
Villages and city centers have been flooded within hours due to the heaviest rains over the past two decades. After the withdrawal of flood waters, Pakistanis now face the risk of epidemics due to the emergence of flies which carry deadly viruses.
IHH emergency aid team which arrived at the flood-stricken region on Sept. 28, immediately launched relief efforts. IHH team went to Rahim Yar Khan region in Punjab province where flooding began first. Examining Ghotki, Sukkur and Khairpur neighborhoods, IHH began to take emergency relief items to the region.
Delivering hot meals to 2,000 people very day, IHH team also began to deliver shoes and blankets to the flood victims with the deterioration of the weather.
In cooperation with the Pakistani army, a helicopter was sent to the villages in the north of Sindh to deliver relief items to the flood victims.
IHH emergency aid team members who visited the villages with the helicopter were welcomed joyfully by the villagers. Aid coordinator B. İsmail Songür who delivered aid from the helicopter to the flood victims said:
“Living circumstances are upside down here. Roads of some villages are still closed. Access to these places is in no way possible. People are sitting on village roads and waiting for their death. We first thought of entering the region with vehicles but this was impossible. So, we decided to cooperate with the Pakistani army and asked for a helicopter. We went to all the regions which were difficult to access. People do not know what to do when they see the aid packages. You would be deeply touched if you had been able to see the people receiving aid packages after staying hungry for days. An old man who saw the ‘Turkey’ note on the packages burst into tears of joy saying: ‘The grandsons of the Ottomans did not forget us.’”
Responding to questions on the needs of the flood-stricken regions, Songür added: “For the Pakistani people, floods have ended but it will be very difficult to heal the wounds caused by the flooding. People are living without having the necessary items for them to be able to continue living. In addition, since the soil is fully filled with water, the withdrawal of flood waters has ended. There are puddles everywhere. Different types of flies and microscopic creatures appear in these puddles. They place the lives of the people at risk. Today, I saw a person who died of a fly bite. It is the old people and children who are at risk mostly in the region. These people need basic relief items at the moment. They need accommodation, healthcare services and food. Deaths have begun due to starvation. We also try to ensure that people here also feel themselves safe psychologically. The survivors of the flood wait for help in the tents they established near the main roads. Pakistani people wait for help in order to recover from the aftereffects of the flood.”
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