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Community World Service Asia, with the financial support of Christian Aid, has been working with flood-prone and affected communities in Thatta, Sindh since 2010. Along with utilizing our innovative Mobile Knowledge Resource Center to conduct interactive training workshops to support community members, teachers and students to become disaster resilient, we promote community ownership of disaster risk reduction initiatives through the formation of local level disaster management committees. These committees are essential to the active participation of communities in preparedness and mobilization in the event of a disaster, as well as building sustainability of the intervention. The committees carry out assessments of local risks and capacity to respond, as well as producing hazard maps and conducting evacuation drills.

On June 15th, members of the disaster management committee in Union Council Bijora, Thatta participated in an exposure visit to a neighboring village, Ali Muhammat Jat, to share their experiences of working to build community resilience to natural disasters.   The visit was an opportunity for both communities to identify good practices and areas in which they can learn from one another. The participants shared the importance of engaging and coordinating with community members in order to successfully identify needs and priorities, and effectively sensitize communities to important practices such as education and disaster preparedness. The committee in Ali Muhammad Jat, supported by Islamic Relief Pakistan, also shared their initiative of monitoring local news alerts to develop their own early warning system, which the committee members from UC Bijora found particularly interesting and useful.

Exposure visits like these enable the communities with whom we work to develop links with other groups, learn from them, and adapt relevant initiatives to strengthen their own practices. This also helps the committees which we establish in becoming self-sustaining and durable in the long-term.

Floods triggered by heavy monsoon rains continued to cause devastation in areas along the Chenab and other small rivers and tributaries placing lives and valuable assets of the people at risk. Due to these rains and flood related incidents, 11 people lost their lives in Rawalpindi so far.

In Jhang, due to the damaged protection bund, flood water has inundated several villages destroying the agriculture land and crops.

The already affected areas include Jhang, Layyay and Qadirabad. Due to the increase in the water level in the rivers, Khanewal, Muzaffargarh, Multan and Wazirabad are at high risk of flooding as well.

Emergency warnings have been released through loud speakers and the communities at higher risk have been advised to evacuate the area. The water level is continuously increasing in rivers and dams in different areas of the country including Punjab and the twin cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi. The Pakistan Metrological Department has predicted more rains in most parts of KPK and Punjab in the coming weeks.

Community World Service Asia is currently monitoring the situation. Its emergency response teams are prepared and will start emergency response activities if required as per their Monsoon Contingency Plan.

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@communityworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 332 5586134

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

Sources:
www.dawn.com
www.express.com.pk

Picture: http://92newshd.tv

Flash floods caused by heavy monsoon rains killed at least 11 people including two children in different areas of Rawalpindi on Tuesday, July 7.

The flash floods swept away five people, of whom four drowned. There were reports of more casualties due to structural collapse and electrocution but the exact figure of these have not yet been confirmed.

The water surged into the houses and its level reached up to two feet in the surrounding areas. Terrified residents were seen sitting on rooftops as floodwaters gushed through the streets in localities of Rawalpindi.

A red alert has been issued for the Lai Nullah and the people living on the river banks have been advised to evacuate the areas.

A flood warning has also been issued for the Chinab River till 9th of July.

Further spells of monsoon rains are predicted to hit the affected regions again. Monsoon rains cause widespread casualties and damage to property every year in Pakistan.

Community World Service Asia is currently monitoring the situation. Its emergency response teams are prepared and will start emergency response activities if required.

To view the contingency plan for this emergency response, click here to download Monsoon Contingency Plan

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@communityworldservice.asia
Cell: +92 332 5586134

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

Sources:
www.dawn.com
www.express.com.pk

The death toll of the heatwave affected individuals has risen to 1400 with more than 40,000 people suffering from heat exhaustion and strokes according to UNOCHA’s latest report. To respond to this growing crisis Community World Service Asia initiated an emergency heatwave response. In collaboration with its partners, Participatory Village Development Program (PVDP), Transformation and Reflection for Rural Development (TRD) and Society for Safe Environment and Welfare of Agrarians in Pakistan (SSEWA Pak) the response has completed its first week.

Heatwave rehabilitation centers in three different districts; Dadu, Mirpurkhas and Tharparkar of Sindh have been established and are running successfully. A number of consultation meetings were conducted with the government health departments in order to set up these relief centers.

Free medical consultations and medicines have been provided to 215 patients from the affected population under this response so far. Of the treated patients, 104 are men, 61 are women and 50 are children. Awareness raising activities on heatstroke orientation, its symptoms, treatment and prevention are also being conducted for the public sector paramedic staff and the visiting patients. The community members have been actively participating in these awareness sessions and the attendance is seen to have increased by the day.

As per the project plan, awareness sessions on building resiliency towards extreme weather are to be extended to village levels. Mobile health teams will conduct these sessions with the communities in other villages as well. Awareness about heatstroke prevention and extreme weather precautions will also be disseminated through text messages and interactive theaters.

Some of the affected areas in Sindh received its first surge of rain after a long drought last week but the showers were minimal. Thus, the drought and extreme heat spell is expected to continue in this part of the country. Medical specialists have started warning government departments about the possible spread of gastroenteritis amongst the affected communities in the coming days.

The heatwave that hit Pakistan during the last three days has led to an unprecedented increase in morbidity and deaths among the underprivileged populations of Sindh.

Since Saturday June 20th, the extreme hot spell in Karachi and other areas of Southern Pakistan have led to a death toll of 530 people which is expected to escalate further with the rise in temperature as per reports by the three leading English Daily Newspapers (Dawn, The News & Express Tribune). The Daily Express has however reported the death toll to have reached a 1000 people. Hundreds of affected populations have been hospitalized for sun-strokes and other heat related complications. Many are still awaiting emergency health assistance in the far-flung areas of interior Sind and Southern Punjab.

The temperature in Southern Pakistan has been recorded at a constant high continuum, ranging from 43 degree Celsius (in Karachi) to 49 degree Celsius in Jacobabad. As per environmental experts, the country’s heat index has risen because of poor environmental conditions since the past couple of decades. This intense heat wave is affecting the destitute populations more because of the extended electricity breakdowns they face and the unavailability of drinkable water. Fasting in the holy month of Ramadan by many people in these areas may have also contributed to the growing crisis.

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.dawn.com
www.pmd.gov.pk
http://arynews.tv/en/mercury-still-at-38-degrees-in-karachi
http://www.geo.tv/article-188842-Blistering-heat-devours-572-people-in-Pakistan-in-just-2-days

The persistence of clouds in the Arabian Sea shows an area of convection with the potential of developing a cyclonic circulation. The sea surface temperatures and the upper air analysis also point towards the development of a deep low pressure area. The numerical models are continuously indicating such cyclonic activity in the Arabian Sea 1,600 km south of the Pakistan coast in the next couple of days.

The Cyclone Warning Centre (Karachi) of Pakistan Meteorological Department is monitoring the local and regional meteorological conditions regularly. A weather advisory will be issued in the next 24 hours should any cyclonic activity occur. All stakeholders and concerned authorities are advised to keep abreast of the latest updates and the weather advisories of The Pakistan Meteorological Department in the coming days.

According to an alert issued by Met Office, the storm will be named Ashubha if it develops into a full-blown cyclone.

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

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

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

Sources:
www.pmd.gov.pk
www.samaa.tv

 

At least 11 people got killed and 11 went missing on Thursday while being washed away by flash floods in the Khuzdar Shah Norani area of Baluchistan.

As reported by Levies sources, the flood occurred in the streams and nullah due to heavy rainfall in the Kohan area of Shah Norani.

According to initial reports, residents of the area were not able to evacuate in time before the flood hit the capital city of Khuzdar district of central Baluchistan.

As many as 22 people are believed to have drowned in the water and 11 dead bodies were removed by the local residents. However, the search for the 11 missing persons is still underway.

The rains made the region inaccessible to the rescue teams who tried to access the site to make rescue efforts; more contingent levies has been dispatched to the affected area for rescue activities.

Further, a recent study suggested that as many as 2.7 million people could be affected yearly by river-floods in Pakistan by 2030; while the number of people affected by floods every year could reach 54 million globally.

Currently, an estimated 715,000 people in Pakistan are affected by floods every year. Last year, nearly a million people were affected by the floods.

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

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

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

Sources:
www.dunyanews.tv
www.tribune.com.pk

DurationSep 09, 2014May 31, 2015
LocationBagh, Hattian Bala, Haveli, and Sudhnoti districts of Azad Kashmir
Key Activities
  • Distribution of food
  • Distribution of NFIs
  • Distribution of non-winterized tents
  • Health service provision
  • Cash-for-work activities
Participants2,424 families: Food
2,424 families: NFIs
400 families: Non-winterized tents
2,000 families: Health service provision
800 families: Cash-for-work activities

DurationFeb 01, 2015Aug 31, 2015
LocationTaluka Dehli and Chachro of Tharparkar District
Key Activities
  • Monthly food items distribution for seven months
Participants1,800: Drought-affected families
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