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Students come together to learn history and strengthen interfaith peace

This May, thirty-two students from universities and colleges in Lahore, Faisalabad, Abbotabad and Peshawar, got together to visit the Katas Raj Temples located in the town of Choa Saidan Shah in the Potohar Plateau area in Punjab. The trip among students was planned as a step towards strengthening relations among various youth groups through exploring Pakistan’s rich cultural history and recognizing the tradition of interfaith harmony practiced here in the past.

Upon nearing the temples, the group crossed a huge cement factory and golden wheat fields, as the complex surrounding the temples, gradually became visible. Before entering the temple, the local experts and the guide of the Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB) narrated the history of the Satgraha Katas Raj Temple and explained the many religious practices that were carried out in each temple. The Katas Raj Temples complex originally consisted of a cluster of seven old temples, remains of a Buddhist Stupa and also some medieval sanctuaries and Havelis[1]. However, today, only four of the seven temples are intact. These ancient ruins are scattered around a pond that practising Hindus consider sacred.

The Katas Raj Temples signify a long history of interfaith synergy, as the site is also home to a historic mosque and another Buddhist temple. The students on the site were also told a Brahman tale narrating the history of the pond. It is believed that the pond was formed after Lord Shiva’s wife, Sati, died. Lord Shiva’s inconsolable grief at her death resulted in a flow of tears forming a pond at the Katas Raj Temples. With this story, the magnificent temples also represents unconditional love between partners.

Students formally introduced themselves to each other and comfortably interacted and shared experiences with another throughout the trip. Many of them planned to organize similar activities for other youth members to encourage an awareness and appreciation among people of different faiths. Asma Syal, one of the students, shared,

I have perceived that all cultures, religions and beliefs deserve the same amount of respect even if they are different.

. The Katas Raj Temples visit not only raised awareness about interfaith harmony, but also connected students from various universities. Students with disparate backgrounds were motivated to build an understanding regardless of race, color and religion.

[1] A traditional townhouse or mansion with historical and architectural significance.

A seven-day workshop on the use of visual communication tools was organized for humanitarian and development workers at a training centre in Pakistan’s hill-station, Murree, this July. Twenty-two participants representing a mix of local non-governmental organizations and internationals ones took part in this residual training which focused on building their visual communication skills. Through this engaging training,  participants enhanced their capacities required to translate development and humanitarian related messages used for various purposes, such as educational, behavior change or advocacy and campaigning into visual language. Hands-on techniques on when, how and innovatively to use them were taught and practised.

Participants Experience:

  • A Third Eye

    “I came here to acquire new skills. Being a part of this training has given me the ability to now translate what I see and how I feel into visual imagery. I feel that the camera is my third eye now.”

    Sarfaraz Qamar (TIPU Foundation Pakistan)
    Participant

     

  • Learning Through Diversity

    “The highlight of my seven days at O’Spring was the opportunity to learn from such a diverse group of trainees. Diversity has so many layers: age, experience, themes, even geographic. Community World Service Asia brought us all together on one page, offering a chance to absorb so many perspectives.”

    Mehr Aftab Salma (Aga Khan Agency for Habitat, Pakistan)
    Participant

  • Role of Media in Development

    “I am really glad that I got the opportunity to be a part of this workshop. It met all the current needs of development sector and built our capacity to use the basic visual tools in our work. Now I can present visual stories more efficiently and effectively.”

    Saira Basharat (Community Support Concern, Pakistan)
    Participant

  • Essentials of Learning

    “The participants made this training an effective one: their eagerness to learn and their relevant yet diverse experiences in communications, made the learning process a wholesome one. I am happy that the participants did not allow their differences to come in the way of their learning.”

    Imran Lashari (Plum Studios, Ogilvy & Mather Pakistan)
    Trainer

     

  • Your Behaviour Matters!

    “Good behaviour leads to constructive learning. I observed that the participants of this group were helpful towards each other. Also, I have never seen such cameras and poses before. Where do you get them from?”

    Liaquat Ali (O’Spring)
    Support Staff

     

  • My duty, Your safety

    “I don’t make exceptions for anyone. I treat everyone who comes here for a training, the same. I have learned to ignore when someone gets upset with me or happy because only by staying true to my duty can I ensure your safety.”

    Asghar Khan (O’Spring)
    Security Guard

     

As part of developing the syllabus for the Post-Graduate diploma in NGO Management, faculty from universities and colleges of Punjab, Peshawar and Sindh (Jamshoro) along with representatives from the provincial social welfare department and Community World Service Asia staff came together for a three-day consultative workshop in Lahore this August. The key objective of the workshop was to discuss and agree on the main contents of the teaching guideline for each of the modules taught under the NGO management course and develop clear action plans for the course.

The interactive and discussion filled workshop facilitated by Takeshi Komino, Deputy Director and Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) Expert, Community World Service Asia, had a participation of twenty academia practitioners, fifteen women and five men. These included University Professors, Assistant Professors, Lecturers and college teachers, from across Pakistan.

To support universities in teaching about humanitarian and development practices (based on field work) and empower them on tools and approaches used by development professionals, Community World Service Asia succeeded in developing partnership with two Universities i.e., University of Peshawar and University of the Punjab. Both of these universities are among the oldest institutions in Pakistan. In both the universities, the Department of Social Work has been assessed to being very similar to the work of the aid and development sector.

Community World Service Asia then initiated the process of supporting both institutions in designing this new post-graduate diploma course through a six step process leading to the launch of the degree. Peshawar University already launched the degree in February this year and received an overwhelming application response from graduate students and some NGO practitioners. While, University of Punjab aims to start offering the course in December this year and University of Sindh plans to initiate it sometime in their 2018 semesters.

This workshop is part of the technical and consultative support that Community World Service Asia is providing to the academia in assuring that the degree fully meets its objective of familiarizing students with the fundamental concepts of NGO management and its project implementations, its role in bringing about social change through explaining the various dimensions in which it works. The next step in this process is to conduct a Training of Trainers on “Creative Facilitation Skills” to further strengthen the capacity of faculty members teaching the various course modules.  This is planned to be held in Peshawar University this October.

Academia Insights:

  • Sonia Omar, Assistant Professor, Social Work Department, Punjab University

    “This course is really a need of the hour as far as the significance of this degree is concerned, considering the situation in Pakistan. We are a developing country; we cannot always rely on the government alone. Therefore, we have to support and encourage NGOs and the university and academia needs to take a step ahead. We must add specific development and aid practice related programs to our departments and courses. These will help future practitioners and those who are already in the field. It will also help those who want to establish NGOs to serve the people of the country.

    This three-day workshop really helped in building the right curriculum for the NGO management course. We are expecting that the drafted curriculum will be further refined. We at Punjab University really intend to start the degree within 6 months. I am sure we will be getting a great response from the students.

    Community World Service Asia has been very facilitative through our collaboration. When so many think tanks from NGO sector, academia and social welfare departments working together always ends in very positive outcomes.”

  • Sumera Farid, Teacher of Introduction to NGOs Module, Social Sciences Department, Peshawar University

    As teachers, this course has been very interactive with a lot of participation from students. For students, this course has been very interesting and new. They have all been very enthusiastic, sometimes critical and very active in discussions. It has been more of a two-way learning process for us. With teaching this course, we really felt like we’re contributing a lot in the learning process of students and youth. The exposure visits and special lectures that we have included as part of the modules acts as developing linkages for these students and helps to set a foundation for future professional careers for students. We organised a visit to the Drug Addiction Centres and lectures from representatives of Social Welfare Departments as part of the first semester. Admissions for fall semester have also been announced for new students for this degree and we are expecting many applications.”

  • Bashir Khan, Deputy Director, Social Welfare Department (KPK) & Visiting Faculty at Peshawar University.

    “I am teaching the students of this Diploma course on social legislation policies in regards to the non-profit sector. Most of the students in the course have social sciences background, and only few who are actually NGO practitioners, so this is a great learning opportunity for them. This is mostly new information for them and many students have joined this course with a hope to be employed in the private social/development sector with knowledge of this additional information. Today, we are here at this workshop to review the course modules and revise and design the course to best fit the understanding level and requirements of students.”

     

  • Farhana Noreen, Human Rights Teacher, Social Sciences Department, Peshawar University.

    “I am teaching the Human Rights modules to students in this degree. We received more applications from new under-grad students for this diploma course. Therefore, we have started the modules and subjects from the very basic level. The teachers for this course have been given 30% flexibility on teaching methodologies which is great. Students are very enthusiastic to learn as they are eager to join the NGO sector. As part of the course, we organised exposure visits of students to the Ministry of Human Rights as practical learning. This aspect of learning has been very effective and of great interest to students.

    As one of the inputs for this workshop, we do feel that some of the modules of the course need reshuffling in terms of where to be taught in the semester timelines for it to be more effective.”

  • Mohammad Arshad Abbasi, Assistant Professor, Social Work Department, Punjab University

    “NGO management and leadership is a new concept in Pakistan. A large number of organizations are working in the NGO sector but very few of them have the expertise skills and are academically qualified to work on social issues and in the humanitarian/development sector. This diploma has been designed to equip our students with the skills, knowledge and expertise on how to work with NGOs, specially on enhancing skills on developing project proposals, fund-raising and on human rights issues and the various laws and policies related to NGOs. I hope that our students will get maximum benefits through this diploma. Furthermore, this diploma program will assist in developing expert and trained human resources that will ultimately play an important role in the NGO sector and in improving the sector. The consultation by Community World Service Asia and their technical and financial assistance has played a key role in developing the curriculum of this degree program. And time to time, training and exposure opportunities provided by them have helped us a lot in refining and finalizing the course contents and to get it approved by the concerned authorities.”

  • Waheed Akbar, Lecturer, Social Work Department, University of Sindh in Jamshoro.

    “As far as my department and our university is concerned, this is a very helpful course for the future of our students, given that they will get this sort of professional knowledge through all the modules included in this one-year diploma. I think this will be a milestone in our department and as well as for students of social work in this area. During this course and after completion, students will be equipped with specialized knowledge and skills and their capacities will be enhanced. Our university will be creating resources for the development and humanitarian sector of our province.  The NGO management diploma is also offered to professionals who are already working in the field, though many of them don’t have the exact NGO academic qualification. Therefore, this will be an added platform and capacity building opportunity in the form of a certified degree for them.

    This consultative workshop gave us a chance to share and learn a lot of knowledge from faculties from universities from Peshawar and Punjab. Through this workshop, we aimed to polish and develop the syllabus, we discussed new ideas and possibilities. We also realized that there are some specific and technical areas in the course, for example social entrepreneurship or financial management etc., that we as faculty need to build our own capacity in as well to teach the students. For this we seek opportunities to enhance and build our own competencies to make this degree a sure success.”

photo credit: https://www.samaa.tv

Monsoon rains have made its onset in Pakistan started Monday, June 26, 2017 and since then different parts of the country have received precipitation with intervals. Karachi and Hub are the most affected areas where flooding and electrocution has claimed seventeen human lives. Five persons were electrocuted in different parts of Karachi city and two children drowned in a pond, while nine people including two children died due to heavy rains in Hub and Lasbela areas of Baluchistan. Flash floods have also swept away several houses in Hub, Baluchistan.

In Khyber Pakhtunkhawa and Gilgit Baltistan intermittent rain was witnessed in various regions, out of which Chitral, Lower Dir, Bajaur, Shangla and Upper Dir saw minimal rain while Attar Pak saw received the heaviest spell. One boy lost his life in Chitral in rain related incidents.

Rain-thundershowers with gusty winds may occur at scattered places of Hyderabad, Karachi, Mirpurkhas, Tharparkar, Shaheed Benazirabad division, and at isolated places of Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Gujranwala, Lahore, Malakand, Hazara, Kohat, Bannu, D I Khan, Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan.

There is risk of landslides in hilly areas of upper Khyber-Pakhtukhwa, Malakand, Hazara, Gilgit-Baltistan and Kashmir.

Community World Service Asia Response: Community World Service Asia will monitor the situation and will try to get updated information from different stakeholders. Its emergency response teams are ready and will be deputed immediately if the need to respond to the crisis arise.

Contacts:

Dennis Joseph
Associate Director – Disaster Management Program
Email: dennis.joseph@communityworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 300 855 7414

Palwashay Arbab
Head of Communications
Email: palwashay.arbab@communityworldservice.asia
Tel: +92 42 3586 5338

Sources:
www.samaa.tv
www.tribune.com.pk
www.dawn.com

Community World Service Asia’s Capacity Institutionalization project (CIP) continues to provide trainings and technical assistance resources that caters to the requirements of civil society organizations. In an effort to build the capacity of local humanitarian and development organizations and to expand the use of evidence-based practices, Community World Service Asia hosted two networking events in Islamabad and Lahore in the month of June.  Participants from different organizations shared their learnings, success stories and future implementation and partnership ideas in this event.

The first networking event took place in Lahore. Representatives and participants from various organizations attended the session and explored new possible partnerships. Organizations of the same professional community got to know more about each other’s’ work, upcoming trainings and how to participate in them, areas of priority and published work.

The second event of the same nature was held in Islamabad with the aim to promote the trainings the organization offers on various topics on organizational development and humanitarian quality and accountability at national and regional levels among the aid sector in Islamabad.

Participants Tête-à-Tête

FarkhandaDr. Farkhanda Ather – Mercy Corps

“This was an interesting event, which provided an opportunity to know the local NGOs as well as the diversified scope of work of Community World Service Asia”

NobaNoba Anil- Community Advancement Society

“This networking event was very useful, because it gave us a chance to interact with different organizations. These kind of networking events are beneficial for developing relationships between humanitarian organizations.”

mahrukhMahrukh Saleem – Plan international

“We got to find out a lot of helpful information regarding trainings today. This will  help us in enhancing the capacity of our organization’s staff. Moreover, the  event was very interactive and it provided an opportunity for organizations at all levels to get to  know each other.“

Hafeez AhmadSHafeez Ahmed- Human Rights Commission of Pakistan

“The session on Community World Asia’s work, domain and focus areas was quite an informative one. It is good for new learners as well as for those who are running their own CBOS and NGOs to get this sort of information. Vital information about upcoming trainings, their procedure to participate, very important themes like project management and financial management were covered. This session serves as a key for new avenues of development especially for those who are eager to do something in future.”

TariqTariq Rahim- ACF (Action Against Hunger) International

“It is a great experience of working with Community World Service.  They always bring us together and provide us with an opportunity to sit together and share ideas.  The event was a successful platform for networking.”

Photo credits: Saleem Dominic

Floods 2015 (Joint Update)

f15map

The ongoing flood emergency is continuing to adversely affect the lives and livelihoods of thousands of communities all across Pakistan and its AJK state. The rains that started in the mid of July have continued for weeks disrupting the lives of many communities. The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) have reported 917,791 people as affected; 173 deaths and 127 injuries owing to the devastating floods. In Sindh, the rainfall leading to floods has affected the Katcha area of the six districts however it is anticipated that the floods will drift down to the low lying districts of the province as well.

Damage statistics caused by the floods in the country are indicated in the table below:

Province Deaths Injured Houses Damaged Villages Affected Population Affected
AJ&K 22 5 237 17
Baluchistan 13 33 798
Gilgit Baltistan 7 6 812 286 136,000
KPK 83 70 3,320
Punjab 48 13 2,025 496 362,863
Sindh 2,097 418,928
Total 173 127 7,192 2,896 917,791

Government authorities have predicted an increase in flooding particularly in Sindh in the upcoming days as heavy monsoon rains are continuing, thus increasing flood water levels in Kabul, Indus, Jhelum and Chenab rivers. The persistent melting of glaciers in Diamer district are further adding to the rise in river waters. The authorities have warned of massive destructions in interior Sindh in the coming weeks when flood water from all of over the country is expected to pass through catchment districts of Indus River in the Sindh province.

Following is a brief overview of the impact the recent flash floods have had on the different provinces of Pakistan so far:

Sindh:  Six districts have been severely affected by the floods in Sindh so far and the number of the affected villages is expected to increase rapidly in the following days. The affected districts in Sindh include Kashmore, Gothki, Shikarpur, Khairpur, Sukur and Qambar Shahdadkot.  The displaced communities have no choice but to live in tents under open skies on embankments and elevated areas in the affected districts. Anticipating displacement from these districts the government has established relief camps at various embankments.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa: Eleven districts of the KPK province have been affected by the floods and a lot  more damage is expected in the near future due to the unending monsoon rains, land sliding, melting of glaciers and increase in flood level in Kabul and Indus rivers. The affected districts in KPK include Bannu, Batagram, Charsadda, Chitral, DI Khan, Karak, Kohat, Lakki Marwat, Peshawar, Swat and Shangla. However Nowshera and Charsadda are at a higher risk because of the mounting pressure being caused in Kabul River due to the continuing rains.

Gilgit-Baltistan: Diamer, Gilgit, Ghizar, Ghanche, Skardu and Hunza districts have been reported to be severely damaged. A number of roads and connecting bridges have been washed away leaving many villages disconnected from the main towns.

AJK: District Sudhnoti, Neelam, Havaili and Bhimber have been reported to have been affected by the rains and flash floods in 17 villages in the region.

Punjab: Almost 500 villages in Mianwali, Layyah, DG Khan, Rajanpur, Rahimyarkhan and Muzaffargarh districts are left inundated by the floods. Agricultural land spread across 378,172 acres of land have also been destroyed.

Baluchistan: Heavy rainfall, windstorms and the inevitable floods have left districts Zhob, Musakhel, Killa Saifullah, Kohlu and Dera Bugti severely damaged; flood protection bunds, electricity poles, roads, plantations have been impaired. The floods have caused breaches at various locations in the protection bunds claiming four lives so far.

FATA: A number of villages and houses have been reported as damaged in the Khyber and Mohmand agencies of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas. However, exact figures are yet to be reported by the authorities and the national media.

Response by Act Alliance: Community World Service Asia’s project teams are present in KPK, Sindh and Punjab provinces as well as in Azad Jamu & Kashmir. Sindh, positioned on the tail-end of Indus River, is one of the most flood-prone provinces. A number of districts in Sindh are already affected and the thousands of people displaced are in need of food, non-food items (NFIs) and health assistance. Community World Service Asia’s team in Sindh has carried out assessments and has also completed the distribution of monthly food packages to 100 flood affected families. The assistance is to be continued as 2,221 additional families will receive monthly food packages in the coming weeks. Community World Service Asia will also establish a water treatment plant in district Ghotki which will provide treated, clean drinking water to approximately 5,000 flood affected people on a daily basis for a month. Provision of Emergency Health Services has also been proposed in district Ghotki.

Our partner, NCA’s WASH team have also completed an assessment in Punjab and Sindh. In Sindh province, NCA has jointly assessed the situation in district Ghotki together with Community World Service Asia focusing on WASH, health and livelihoods. NCA’s assessment covers Layyah, Muzaffargarh and Rajanpur districts in Punjab province and Ghotki, and Kashmore districts in Sindh province.  The assessment team has conducted a rapid survey using semi-structured questionnaires, key informant interviews, FGDs and interviews with government stakeholders to gather important information on access, vulnerability, coping capacity, available resources and existing key risks. The assessment has been compiled.

As part of NCA’s emergency preparedness plan, the organization is mobilizing its pre-positioned mobile Water Treatment Units (WTUs) for immediate use. Each unit can purify and provide clean drinking water to 5,000 individuals based on SPHERE standards. Keeping in view the urgent needs and NCA’s life saving response capacity, it is utilizing its internal funds (through their head office) to provide emergency funds to immediately mobilize the WTUs. As planned for this response, six WTUs will provide water to alteast 30,000 individuals at this crucial stage. The budgeted amount is calculated for a three months response.

Contacts:
Allan A. Calma
Deputy Director
Disaster Management Program
Email: allan.calma@communityworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 301 5801621

Muhammad Fazal
Associate Director
Emergencies/DRR/Climate Change
Email: fazil.sardar@communitryworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 332 5586134

Palwashay Arbab
Head of Communications
Email: palwashay.arbab@communityworldservice.asia
Ph: +92 42 3586 5338

Sources:
www.ndma.gov.pk
www.pmd.gov.pk

The monsoon rains that struck Pakistan in the third week of July are still continuing across the country. As a result of the heavy monsoon rains and melting of glaciers in the north of country, there has been widespread flooding in different regions of the country. The table below shows the level of damages reported till today:

No. of Casualties People injured Houses damaged Villages affected Total affected population
146 66 3,133 2,073 752,274

The floods have also severely damaged the infrastructure and local livelihoods of many parts of rural and semi-urban Pakistan; agricultural fields and crops have been damaged. A number of local markets, link roads, connecting bridges and micro-hydro power stations have been reported damaged as well.

As per the latest reports of the Pakistan Meteorological & Hydrological Department, the River Indus at Guddu Barrage is likely to attain a High to very High flood level ranging between 650,000 cusecs to 750,000 cusecs during 1400 PST of August 1st to 2400 PST of August 3rd 2015. It was further added that the flood levels will continue to remain high for the following seven days.

River Indus at Sukkur is also reported to maintain a High to very High flood level ranging between 650,000 cusecs to 750,000 cusecs during 1200 PST of August 2nd to 2400PST of August 4th2015. Flood levels will remain high for the next seven days in this region as well.

Unceasing heavy monsoon showers are expected in the coming days across Pakistan and a further increase in the water levels in Kabul, Indus, Jhelum and Chenab Rivers may intensify the flooding in Sindh. The Director General of the Meteorological Department still maintains as per his earlier message that India is also likely to release excess water from its dams in the following days which can upsurge flooding in the low-lying areas of Pakistan also. The authorities have warned of massive destruction in interior Sindh in the subsequent weeks as flood water from all of over the country will pass through catchment districts of Indus River in the Southern province.

The impact of the latest flash floods on different provinces of Pakistan are indicated briefly below:

SINDH
No. of Casualties People injured Houses Damaged Villages Affected Total affected population
16 -* -* 1,423 281, 921
* No definite number available yetThe affected communities displaced are forced to live in tents and under the open sky or on embankments and elevated places in the affected districts. The government has established relief camps at various embankments for the affected people however people have been reported to prefer to live in open spaces instead. The provincial government together with the Pakistan Army is providing rescue and evacuation services to the flood affected communities and villages.
KHYBER PAKHTUNKHWA (KPK)
No. of Casualties People injured Houses Damaged Villages Affected Total affected population
73 31 348 292 -*
* No definite number available yetChitral is the worst affected district in KPK province. Majority of the villages have lost land-connections that they had between major cities as link roads and connecting bridges, micro-hydro power stations have been severely damaged. The Government has distributed relief items including tents among the displaced families and has also announced a cash compensation of PKR. 0.5 Million for each affected family that has lost their house in the floods in Chitral.
GILGIT BALTISTAN
No. of Casualties People injured Houses Damaged Villages Affected Total affected population
5 2 653 175 136,000
* No definite number available yetGhizar, Astor, Skardu and Hunza districts have been reported to be severely damaged. A number of roads and connecting bridges have been washed away that has left many villages disconnected from the main towns. 
Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK)
No. of Casualties People injured Houses Damaged Villages Affected Total affected population
20 8 189 -* -*
* No definite number available yetDistrict Sudhnoti, Neelam, Havaili and Bhimber have been reported to affect by the rains and flash floods.
Punjab
No. of Casualties People injured Houses Damaged Villages Affected Total affected population
22 4 553 466 334, 353
Villages in Mianwali, Layyah, DG Khan, Rajanpur, Rahimyarkhan and Muzaffargarh districts are most severely swamped by the flood water of River Sindh.  Out of the total affected population in Punjab, 59250 are reported to be living in 27 relief camps established by the Government.  Crop fields spread across 233,688 acres of land have been totally destroyed.
Baluchistan
No. of Casualties People injured Houses Damaged Villages Affected Total affected population
10 24 620 -* -*
* No definite number available yetHeavy rainfall, windstorms has affected Districts Zhob, Kohlu and Dera Bugti with flooding. Flood protection walls, electricity poles and links roads have been damaged while trees and plants have been uprooted as well. High flood levels in Guddu and Taunsa barrages are posing a probable threat to more districts of Baluchistan.
Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA)
A number of villages and houses have been reported to be damaged in Khyber and Mohamand agencies of Federally Administered Tribal Areas. However, exact figures have yet to be reported by the authorities and national media.

Response by Community World Service Asia: Community World Service Asia’s Disaster Response Team are present in KPK, Sindh and Punjab provinces as well as in Azad Jammu & Kashmir. Sindh, positioned on the tail-end of Indus River, is one of the most flood-prone provinces. A number of districts in Sindh are already severely affected and thousands of people are in dire need of immediate food, NFI and health assistance. Community World Service Asia has been able to assist 100 most vulnerable flood affected families in district Ghotki with provision of one month food rations.  One month food ration among another 827 families will be distributed in the coming weeks.

Contacts:
Allan A. Calma
Deputy Director
Disaster Management Program
Email: allan.calma@communityworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 301 5801621

Muhammad Fazal
Associate Director
Emergencies/DRR/Climate Change
Email: fazil.sardar@communitryworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 332 5586134

Palwashay Arbab
Head of Communications
Email: palwashay.arbab@communityworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 42 3586 5338

Sources:
www.ndma.gov.pk
www.pdma.gov.pk
www.tribune.com.pk
www.dailytimes.com.pk
www.express.com.pk

Download updated map indicating the latest flood situation of Pakistan

Heavy monsoon rains hit different parts of Pakistan starting the third week of July and are still going strong. These rains along with rapid melting of glaciers have resulted in massive flooding across the country. Till date, 145 people have been reported to have died, while 36 people have been injured because of this heavy downpour and floods. Three thousand and fifty houses are damaged and 451 villages have been totally inundated while many more villages have been partially affected resulting in the displacement of around 3, 85,957 people across the country. These latest floods have also severally damaged the infrastructure and the local livelihoods.  A total of 715 cattle have perished in the floods, and 233,688 acres of agricultural land, local markets, roads, bridges and micro hydro-power stations have been damaged.

The Government authorities have predicted an increase in flooding especially in the Sindh province in the upcoming days due to the continuing rains, increase in flood water level in Kabul, Indus, Jhelum and Chenab rivers, and the further melting of a glacier in Diamer district. According to the Director General of the Meteorological Department, India has also released 150,000 cusecs of flood water which means 0.8 million cusecs of water is currently passing through the Guddu Barrage. India is likely to release more surplus water from its dam in the coming days which will further increase flooding in the low-lying areas of Pakistan. The authorities have warned of possible massive destruction in interior Sindh in the following weeks as flood water from all of over the country will be passing through catchment districts of Indus River in the province.

Following is a brief overview of impact of recent flash floods on different provinces of Pakistan so far:

Sindh: 16 people have died because of rains and floods and many more have been reported injured as of today. Six districts and over 300 villages have been affected by the floods in Sindh so far and many more villages are expected to be gravely affected in the days to come. The affected districts in Sindh include Kashmore, Gothki, Shikarpur, Khairpur, Sukur and Qambar Shahdadkot.  Over 100,000 people have been displaced and are forced to live in tents and under the open sky on river embankments and elevated places in the affected districts.   Anticipating displacement from these districts the government has established relief camps at various embankments in Sindh. The provincial government together with 800 personnel from the Pakistan Army is providing rescue and evacuation services to the people from the flood affected villages. Hundreds of people currently living in the open air and under tents are at risk of being highly food insecure.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK): Three districts and 292 villages have been affected by the floods in KPK where 74 people have died and 15 have been injured so far. Many more damages are expected to follow in the coming days because of the continued monsoon rains, land sliding, melting of glaciers and increasing water levels in Kabul and Indus rivers. The affected districts in KPK include Chitral, Peshawar and Shangla while Nowshera and Charsadda are at high risk because of mounting pressure in Kabul River and continued monsoon rains.  Chitral is the most affected district where 64 people have died and 31750 houses have completely washed away with the flood water. Majority of the villages have lost land-connections with the major cities because of destruction of roads and connecting bridges and micro-hydro power stations. The Government has distributed relief items including tents among the displaced families and have also announced PKR. 0.5 million in cash for each family that have lost their homes due to the floods in Chitral.

Gilgit-Baltistan: Ghizar, Astor, Skardu and Hunza districts have been most damaged in this region. Six hundred and twenty five houses have reported to be fully damaged while many more were reported to be partially damaged as result of rains, landslide and flashfloods. Two people have been reported to have died because of rains/flash floods in this area. A number of roads and connecting bridges have been washed away that had left many villages disconnected from the main towns.

AJK: Districts Sudhnoti, Neelam, Havaili and Bhimber have been reported as worst affected by the rains and flash floods in this region. Thirteen people were reported to have died while eight have been injured and a hundred houses were reported as fully damaged.

Punjab: At least 31 people have died and 4 people have been reportedly injured as a result of the floods and vicious rains in the Punjab province. Four hundred and thirty three villages in Mianwali, Layyah, DG Khan, Rajanpur, Rahimyarkhan and Muzaffargarh districts are left flooded by the overflow of water from the Sindh River.  285,957 people have been reported affected out of which 59250 are living in 27 relief camps established by the Government.  Agricultural fields spread across 233,688 acres of land have also been destroyed.

Baluchistan: Heavy rainfall, windstorm and the flood situation in District Zhob has damaged flood protection bunds, electric poles, roads, uprooting trees, etc. The floods have also caused breaches at various locations of the protection bunds claiming four lives so far. In the central province, at least twenty-one people drowned in the flood water, however, only seven dead bodies have been recovered. The search and rescue operation is underway for the recovery of the rest of the drowned people.

FATA: A number of villages and houses have been reported to have been fully damaged in Khyber and Mohamand agencies of Federally Administered Tribal Areas. However, exact figures have are yet to be confirmed by the authorities and national media.

Response by Community World Service Asia: Community World Service Asia’s field teams are present in KPL, Sindh and Punjab provinces as well as in Azad Jamu & Kashmir. Sindh, positioned on the tail-end of Indus River, is among the most flood-prone provinces. A number of districts in Sindh are already affected and thousands of people are displaced who are now in dire need of food, NFIs and health assistance. Community World Service Asia’s field team in Sindh is carrying out assessments in the affected districts and has also started distribution of one month food rations to hundred most affected families in Gothki district of Sindh province.  Another one month food rations among another 827 families will be distributed in the coming weeks.

Contacts:

Allan A. Calma
Deputy Director
Disaster Management Program
Email: allan.calma@communityworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 301 5801621

Muhammad Fazal
Associate Director
Emergencies/DRR/Climate Change
Email: fazil.sardar@communitryworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 332 5586134

Palwashay Arbab
Senior Communications Officer
Email: palwashay.arbab@communityworldservice.asia
Ph: +92 42 3586 5338

Sources:
http://www.nawaiwaqt.com.pk/E-Paper/Lahore/2015-07-28/page-1/detail-24
http://www.thekawish.com/beta/
www.tribune.com.pk
www.e.dunya.com.pk/National Humanitarian Network
www.ndma.gov.pk
weather.par.com.pk
http://epaper.pknewspapers.com/the-kawish.html
Express News, July 27, 2015 http://www.pdma.gos.pk/new/Docs/flood2015/SER-1-25-2015.pdf
http://www.pdma.gos.pk/new/Docs/flood2015/24-7-2015STOCKSPOSITION.pdf

Monsoon rains and flood continues to create havoc in different parts of the flood affected areas leaving thousands of families affected, number of houses destroyed, thousands of acres of ready to harvest crops and fruits orchards have been damaged, link roads and bridges destroyed. The Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) Director General Dr Ghulam Rasul has issued high alert in the wake of expected widespread heavy rain and flood, over the next five days.

The PMD spokesperson added that the heavy monsoon was concentrating in Sindh where up to 500,000 cusecs of water was already flowing down the Indus at Guddu and Sukkur and the upcoming heavy downpour could aggravate the situation. According to the PMD the entire country is currently under an active monsoon system which might generate heavy widespread rains in coming days. National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) also alerted that a sharp peak of High Flood is expected in River Jhelum at Mangla (upstream).

Following is a brief overview of impact of recent flash floods on different provinces of Pakistan so far:

Sindh: Around 150 villages have been flooded in district Ghotki, Kashmore and Sukkur which affected around 1000,000 people. The continuous driving rains incited rivers to wreak havoc and forced the citizens to shift to safer locations along with their livestock. Along with the three already affected districts, the Provincial Disaster Management Authority of Sindh has forecasted that districts Khairpur, Larkana and Shikarpur are also at high risk of flooding in the coming two to three days which can affect thousands of families in these vulnerable districts. Anticipating displacement from these districts the district governments have established relief camps, health camps and livestock facilities at various embankments.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa: Around 300,000 people in upper and lower Chitral are affected by flash floods. Twenty-six villages are affected in the district, where 145 houses were destroyed and 32 partially damaged. The roads linking Chitral with Drosh, Orghoch, Garam Chashma, Bamboret, Mastuj and Boni are destroyed. Dozens of other link roads, major bridges and the suspension bridges connecting valleys and villages have been swept away in the gushing waters. A hotel, a private college and around 25 water supply schemes have also been swept away. Search and rescue operations are currently underway by Pakistan Army. Relief camps have been established in the affected areas while Government has announced PKR 500,000 for each of the completely affected households. Furthermore PRCS has distributed tents, kitchen sets, hygiene kits, Mosquito nets and blankets to 29 flood affected families. KP government has transported 20 tons of food packs to district Chitral.

Gilgit-Baltistan: Flash floods have cut off at least three valleys in Diamer and Baltistan. The valleys in Diamer – including Niat, Buner and Fairy Meadows – have been experiencing food shortages because of lack of connection with the outside world. Ghanche and Skardu are the worst affected districts of GB. Fast melting glaciers in the northern areas of the country during monsoon season and the resultant flash floods is a wake-up call for the K-P and G-B governments to start planning to tackle the situation.

Punjab: At least 244 villages of Mianwali, Layyah, DG Khan, Rajanpur, Rahimyarkhan and Muzaffargarh districts are inundated by the flood water of Sindh River. According to NDMA, 11 villages in Mianwali, 81 in Layyah, 40 in DG Khan, 14 in Muzaffargarh, 82 in Rajanpur and 16 villages in Rahimyar khan are affected by the flood. Crop fields spread on thousands of acres have been destroyed, while more than 100 families have moved to safer areas on their own due to insufficient arrangements made by the district and tehsil governments. A large number of people are stranded in the flooded localities. The urban localities which are on the bank of Lai Nallah in district Rawalpindi have also been flooded while due to the rain related incidents in the district, a girl has died during the last 24 hours. Government has established 120 relief camps in six districts of the province. Each camp will accommodate 500 people. 6,000 tents and 10,000 food packs are distributed so far.

Baluchistan: Heavy rainfall, windstorm and the flood situation in District Zhob has damaged flood protection bunds, electric poles, roads, uprooting trees, etc. Also caused breaches at various locations to the protection bunds claiming four lives so far. In central province, at least twenty-one people drowned in the flood water where only seven dead bodies recovered while search and rescue operation is underway for the recovery of the rest of the drowned people.

Response by Community World Service Asia:

Sindh being the tail-ender has always been the most affected province and is likely to be among the most affected by recent rains and flooding in the coming couple of days. Community World Service Asia has operational offices and teams in Sindh. Its senior management team, including Regional Representative and Associate Director for Emergencies is on the ground monitoring the situation and will be leading the emergency response. The field team is coordinating with key stake holders to plan to address emergency needs of the population by providing food, NFIs and emergency medical assistance in affected districts.

Contacts:

Allan A. Calma
Deputy Director
Disaster Management Program
Email: allan.calma@communityworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 301 5801621

Muhammad Fazal
Associate Director
Emergencies/DRR/Climate Change
Email: fazil.sardar@communitryworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 332 5586134

Palwashay Arbab
Senior Communications Officer
Email: palwashay.arbab@communityworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 42 3586 5338

Sources:
www.tribune.com.pk
www.e.dunya.com.pk
National Humanitarian Network
www.ndma.gov.pk
weather.par.com.pk

Torrential rains have created havoc in different parts of the country making life miserable for the residents of the affected areas. District Chitral is on top of the list of the worst affected districts where Infrastructure has been the worst-hit and the upper areas of the district have virtually been cut off from the rest of Chitral, leaving as many as 200,000 people stranded.

Kyber Pakhtunkhwa: Initial assessment has revealed massive damages, while officials have reason to believe that the actual situation could be much worse.

The PDMA said the available machinery and manpower had already been deployed for temporary opening of routes to restore communication.

Around 40 connecting bridges and more than 200 smaller bridges have been washed away. An estimated 175 houses were completely destroyed while over 200 others were partially damaged.

Three towns of Latkoh tehsil – Garam Chashma, Arkari and Karimabad – have been inaccessible for the past six days.

Electricity and water supply systems have also been destroyed, while a shortage of edible items has also been reported.

Standing maize and vegetable crops, and the villagers’ cattle and other belongings were swept away, but no loss of life was reported there. However, a girl was killed in the Bakarabad area of Jamrud in Khyber Agency when the roof of a house collapsed because of the heavy downpour.

Punjab: Around 100 villages have been flooded in district layyah, while due to high level flooding in Indus river, thousands acres of crop has been destroyed in district Rajanpur and adjacent areas. The affected people are compelled to evacuate the area and to move to safer places.

Balochistan: Three children were killed and more than a dozen people injured in rain-related incidents in the northern parts of Balochistan, where torrential rains played havoc and disrupted road communication. The protection wall of Sherani was washed away by hill torrents as well, flooding the residential township and the nearby villages. A bridge linking Zhob and Sherani also collapsed, suspending road communication. Heavy rains were also reported in Ziarat, as the downstream in Sibi Valley of the plains was inundated.

Sindh: At least 10 people drowned while swimming or accidentally falling into waterways in separate incidents. The flood water is expected to reach Sindh districts and affect the low lying areas on the bank of the rivers in the next few days.

The PMD has issued a red alert for flash flooding in local nullahs and streams of Punjab, upper K-P, eastern Balochistan and Kashmir for the next three days.

The Met Office has warned the local authorities to take preventive measures to avoid any kind of human or property loss.

PMD meteorologist Muzammil Hussain said the second spell of monsoon would continue across the country until July 30, with weak to moderate showers with short intervals.

He said hot and humid weather would persist across the country, adding that the humidity level had reached 70 per cent.

Community World Service Asia is currently monitoring the situation and will respond if the emergency assistance is required.

Contacts:

Allan A. Calma
Deputy Director
Disaster Management Program
Email: allan.calma@communityworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 301 5801621

Muhammad Fazal
Associate Director
Emergencies/DRR/Climate Change
Email: fazil.sardar@communitryworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 332 5586134

Palwashay Arbab
Senior Communications Officer
Email: palwashay.arbab@communityworldservice.asia
Ph: +92 42 3586 5338

Sources:
www.tribune.com.pk
www.express.com.pk