For Immediate Release DATE : August 11, 2010

Renewed heavy rains, flash floods hamper World Vision's relief efforts in Pakistan • • Weather delays increasing food shortages and hunger as aid agencies struggle to get emergency aid to survivors Despite challenges, World Vision working to find "creative ways" to get relief to families, children as quickly as possible

Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa Province, Pakistan, August 11, 2010 -- Unrelenting downpours, fresh floods and landslides are hampering efforts to provide urgently-needed food to millions of people displaced or stranded by the flooding across Pakistan, said World Vision. Although water has begun to recede in some areas, new rains have closed roads and washed out bridges, making it difficult for aid workers to move around the country. Forecasters predict the heavy rains will continue for the next day or two. “Until the water recedes or we have access to boats or helicopters, it will be nearly impossible for our teams to access some of the worst-affected areas for assessments and delivery of relief supplies,” said Shaharyar Bangash, World Vision’s Program Manager in Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa Province. Delays in providing aid means that food shortages and hunger are becoming a problem. Many crops have been wiped out and food prices are rising, putting even those who weren’t affected directly by the floods at risk. “We are very concerned about the people who are dependent on us to deliver food and provide medical care,” said Bangash. “World Vision is working hard to find creative ways around the barriers created by the flooding, but we are in a very difficult situation as we must balance the safety of our staff with the urgent needs of the millions affected by the floods.” World Vision was forced to cancel a distribution in Bhutni Village due to rising water levels and fears of flash floods. Rainwater seeped into the new emergency health clinic World Vision opened in Kandaro in Lower Dir last week, damaging some of the medical supplies and forcing staff to relocate to a nearby shop until a better permanent location is found. A World Vision assessment team in Peshawar and a team of engineers travelling to Buner in Lower Dir also had to turn back after floods threatened to close the road behind them. A shortage of petrol and diesel are also creating challenges.

World Vision has already delivered food and water to more than 21,000 people living in school buildings and on what’s left of the main roads in Charsadda and Nowshera. The aid agency also plans to distribute water purification packets and hygiene kits to 150,000 people, tents to 22,500, cooking items to 75,000, and food to at least 37,500. World Vision hopes to provide cash-for-work activities to 1,000 people, open seven health posts, set up 20 Child-Friendly Spaces and 20 Women-Friendly Spaces to provide a safe and comfortable environment for children and women to interact with peers and receive support. World Vision continues to work closely and in partnership with the United Nations and other non-governmental organisations through the Pakistan Humanitarian Forum to ensure that effective, efficient, and timely assistance is given to the children, women, and men affected by the floods. To help support World Vision's emergency relief work in Pakistan, visit www.worldvision.org or call 1-888-56-CHILD (1-888-562-4453).

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful