UNITED SIKHS
August 19 2010
4th Bhadon (Samvat 542 Nanakshahi)
Press Release

Ongoing Rains and Flash Floods Exacerbate Disaster Situation in Pakistan

Estimated 20 Million Affected; Families Continue To Arrive At Gurdwara Panja Sahib for Shelter.
Sikh Gurdwara Saheb in Dera Allah Yaar city Submerged in the Floods

“We're 90 families who came yesterday to Gurudwara Panja Sahib with only the clothes on our back. Everything we owned is gone, our houses are entirely washed away by the floods, and, even more people are expected to come in from cities in Sindh and Balochistan. We need help, we appeal to UNITED SIKHS and the international community to assist us in this situation.”    -- Sudam Singh, Jathedar of Sindh and Balochistan Sangat.

PESHAWAR, PAKISTAN: As the onslaught of rain continues, flash floods all over Pakistan are forcing people to move out of their homes and seek shelter elsewhere. United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN OCHA) reports this as a disaster situation that has affected more people than any other disaster situation, and the situation continues to be critical as the swelling Indus rivers forces people to move elsewhere, losing their homes and livelihoods. UNITED SIKHS continues to provide relief aid to those affected, and needs to step up the pace and scope of work. We would like to emphasize the urgency of support from members of all communities for those affected by this disaster.

Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA)
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon speaks to a group of displaced persons in Punjab Province (Source: United Nations)

Flash floods have affected Sikh and Hindu communities severely in Sindh and Balochistan. There are approximately 300 Sikh and 700 Hindu Families in Kashmore (Sindh), 500 Sikh families in Jacobabad city, 200 Sikh families in District Sukkur, some Sikh families in Ghotki city and 2000 Sikh and Hindu families in Tehsil Jatpat, and Dera Aallah Yaar city of  Jaffarabad district of Balochistan. These families are seriously affected; most houses in these areas are washed away in flash floods. Hundreds of Sikh and Hindu families from here have fled to Gurdwara Panja Saheb (Hasan Abdal), Gurudwara Janamasthan Nankana Saheb (district Nankana Saheb) and Gurdwara Dera Saheb Panjvih Pathshahi (Lahore)

The Gurdwara Saheb, Guru Nanak Shah in  Dera Allah Yaar, district Jaffarabad constructed by the local sangat now remains submerged in the water. The local sangat has taken the Guru Granth Sahebji to Quetta city in Balochistan and is in the safe residential quarters of the Sikhs.

Sikhs and other minority communities are migrating from all over the country to Panja Sahib Gurdwara and their number is swarming gradually. Currently over 100 Sikh families from Kashmor , Jacobabbad of Sindh- district Tapat & Jaffarabad-district Balochistan have taken shelter in Gurdwara Panja Saheb. The UNITED SIKHS Aid Humanitarian Relief team is distributing emergency survival relief kits to those affected by the floods in Nowshehra, Peshawar, Charsadaa, Bunner and the Swat Valley.

 
Displaced Families at Gurdwara Panja Sahib   Langar Preparation at Gurdwara Panja Saheb

The emergency survival kit and the food-item kits lasting for 2 weeks each are costing $50 (USD), for a family of 7-10 for 2 weeks. UNITED SIKHS is preparing these kits and distributing them to the 500 more affected families this week in Nowshera, Peshawar, Charsadda and Swat Valley.

UNITED SIKHS will also provide food supplies to flood affected people in Gurudwara Sri Punja Sahib and other cities of Pakistan.

 How can you HELP !

  1.  Donate or sponsor a family by buying a kit ($50.00)
  2. Make a collection or a contribution in your Gurdwara or local community. Where possible we will collect your kind gift in person and present our relief work
  3. Hold a small fundraising event. We will do our utmost to work with you. Email sikhaid@unitedsikhs.org for ideas and possibilities.
  4. Make a donation by cheque made payable to UNITED SIKHS. These can be sent to your local UNITED SIKHS office. You can find the details at http://unitedsikhs.org/contact.php#IN
  5. Encourage friends and family to donate online at http://www.unitedsikhs.org/donate

 For a previous press release on UNITED SIKHS Pakistan IDP efforts, please visit:

http://www.unitedsikhs.org/PressReleases/PRSRLS-15-08-2010-00.html

Issued by:
Herdyal Singh
Project Aid Coordinator, Pakistan

!! HELP BY DONATING DISTRIBUTION KITS !!


1) KIT A: Emergency NFI (Non Food Items)
Unit: Per Family
Cost:  $50.00
Lasts: 2 weeks
Contents: First Aid Tool-kit (O.R.S, 10 water purification tablets, bandages, pain-relief tablets), 1 large spoon,  1 stove, 1 jug , 5 plastic plates, 5 glasses,  1 knife,  1 plastic tray, 1 mid-sized cooking pot, match box’s(10), 5 tooth brushes and 1 tube toothpaste (minimum 130ml), 2 small cleaning soaps, 1 bucket, 1  shampoo, 2 new bath towels (medium weight, dark), 2 Hair combs & Baby milk powder.

2) Kit B: Food Items
Unit:
Per Family
Cost: $50.00
Lasts: 2 weeks
Contents: Rice (3.5kg), Flour (20kg), Ghee(6kg),Sugar(3.5kg), Spices(1kg), Pulses(3kg), Milk Pack (11 litres),Tea Leaves(1kg), Soap for Clothes(5 kg)

DONATE A KIT BY CLICKING HERE

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Volunteers Needed : Skills: Doctors (Internists, Psychiatrists), Nurses, Engineers and Architects.
To Volunteers write to: contact@unitedsikhs.org

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UNICEF Regional Director for South Asia, Daniel Toole, says, "In the 15 years dealing with emergencies, I have never  seen one this large. The scale and scope of the disaster defies belief."

Waterborne illness: W.H.O fears 3.5 million children are at a particular risk of getting acute water diarrhea and other diseases.

 

Source: NDMA,PDMA: Pakistan Flood Losses
Province Deaths Injured Houses Damaged Population Affected
Balochistan 24 98 19,619 312,774
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 1,068 1,056 179,874 4,365,909
Punjab 103 350 500,000 8,200,000
Sindh 44 405 271,699 2,269,846
AJ&K 69 83 6,472 245,000
Gilgit Baltistan 183 60 2,820 8,561
Total 1,491 2,052 980,484 15,402,090
The degree of severity to which people have been affected by the floods varies depending on their particular losses and damages. UN assessments have been launched in at least three provinces to identify severely affected families who require life-saving humanitarian assistance. For Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, the UN experts have identified 2.7 million people in need of immediate humanitarian assistance.
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