Oxfam is now delivering clean water to almost 100,000 people made homeless by catastrophic flooding in Pakistan.
In four of the worst affected areas of the Khyber Paktankhwa (formerly NWFP) and Punjab Province, Oxfam and partners are repairing damaged water systems and trucking drinking water to those stranded or displaced from their homes.
Oxfam’s Country Director Neva Khan said: “We are providing water purification sachets to people who are reduced to drinking from ponds and dirty standing water. At the same time, we are training people on how to clean the water and how to stay as hygienic as possible in such a chaotic and dangerous environment.”
“The rains started falling a week ago and with every day that goes by more young children will be fighting deadly water-borne diseases. At this critical time we are prioritising getting drinking water to women and children to stem an increase in diarrhoeal diseases.”
In Punjab Province, Oxfam has deployed emergency boats to assist government search and rescue efforts, which have already evacuated 54,000 people to safety.
“People are sheltering in schools, living in makeshift shelters or being hosted by families whose homes are still standing. In the worst-hit areas everyone is struggling to find clean drinking water and food. Oxfam is providing clean water to people who have lost everything,” Ms Khan said.
Oxfam is appealing for $6.6 million to help people get through the immediate days and weeks and to boost recovery over the long-term. The agency is also planning to provide emergency latrines, hygiene kits to help people who have lost everything in the floods, as well cooked food and cash for work.
Oxfam Australia Executive Director Andrew Hewett has urged Australians to dig deep to continue to support the agency’s efforts in Pakistan.
“We need as much support as possible so that we can fund this essential work. Every donation helps,” Mr Hewett said.
What Oxfam is doing
Oxfam has rehabilitated four water systems by repairing pipes or providing fuel to pumps – these simple measures have provided clean water for four villages or 56,000 people.
Oxfam is tankering water to those who have been stranded or displaced. For four days we have been making four to six daily trips to 14 different locations reaching 39,200 people per day with drinking water.
Water quality is very important so Oxfam is treating the water with chlorine and in Swat Valley in Northern Pakistan it is using a water treatment plant.
To donate visit www.oxfam.org.au or phone 1800 034 034
For more information: Contact Kate Thwaites, 0407 515 559, email@example.com
Notes to the editor: Oxfam staff are available for interview on the ground in the affected area. Photos from Pakistan are available on request.