Pakistan is enduring some of the worst floods witnessed in recent times. One-third of the country has been washed away from muddy water, leaving endless devastation in its path. More than 33 million Pakistanis have been displaced by this catastrophe. According to reports, over 1300 people, including children, have lost their lives since the floods began.
Experts believe that the severity of these events was partially caused by the intense heat waves in April and May of 2022. Temperatures peaked as high as 51°C in some areas. This resulted in glaciers melting and rivers became muddy from mountain waste. Fiercely low air pressures in the Arabian Sea brought heavy rain to Pakistan’s coastal provinces as early as June. The consequence is that Pakistan has received almost three times its average annual rainfall for the monsoon period so far. The southern provinces of Sindh and Balochistan have received more than five times that average. Once on land, much of that water is unmoving and dispersing over large areas. More than 1.2 million houses, 5,000 kilometers of road and 240 bridges have been destroyed.
In Sindh, an extended lake has formed, tens of kilometers wide, and more water will continue to rush into it. The number of dead and injured continues to rise on a daily basis. Landslides and flash floods are sweeping away homes, workplaces and bridges. In many villages, people are isolated from all help. According to the Pakistani government, which has declared a state of emergency, more than 3 million children have been affected by the floods. The situation is set to get worse.
The destruction of infrastructure is an enormous setback to Pakistan’s economic circumstances. The farming industry has suffered the most. 4 million acres of land and 800,000 livestock have been ravaged. 80% to 90% of crops have been damaged. These being the main source of income for the majority of people, the Pakistani government has been forced to import foods and appeal for international aid for the flood victims.
According to Pakistan Foreign Minister, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, the damages from the natural disaster will exceed current estimates of $10 billion, adding that the crisis in the country is still ongoing and in the “rescue and relief phase.” The International Monetary Fund on Monday approved the release of $1.1 billion to Pakistan in special drawing rights, a part of its bailout program which began in 2019. However, this will provide only the bare minimum to the affected victims.
The Al-Khidmat Foundation has been at the forefront of fund collections. They have received widespread support from national and foreign benefactors. Many enterprises like Unilever and Samsung have partnered up with Al-Khidmat to gather clean drinking water, medical supplies, non-perishable food supplies, hygiene kits, and fresh clothing. An abundant amount of financial donations have also enabled them to set up Al-Khidmat Tent Village, an initiative to support homeless families in affected regions. At the time of writing, they have managed to collect an estimate of $8.9 million.
The Baitussalam Welfare Trust (BWT) is another credited organization accepting donations regularly. Like Al-Khidmat, they are dispatching volunteers to assist families on the field, guiding them to nearby shelters, and providing immediate medical care to the injured. BWT has also initiated programs to help expecting mothers and newborns that have been forced to live without shelter, basic hygiene, and necessary provisions for survival.
Foreign relief foundations such as Save The Children are operating in the worst affected provinces and deploying teams to other hardest hit areas to assess the immediate needs of children and families. Their primary goal is to rescue vulnerable families from waterborne diseases, drowning, and malnutrition. Islamic Relief Worldwide is also on the ground in Sindh, Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) provinces, and is working as part of the UK’s Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) to raise more funds and reach more of those most in need.
In these desperate times, many companies and organizations have come together to aid those in need. Yugo has not hesitated in offering our help to non-profit organizations working tirelessly in the fields. We will continue to be of service to those in need of assistance and support. Yugo and other associate companies are also collecting donations that will reach the affected parties immediately.
As Pakistanis, it is our solemn duty to come to the aid of our own people and work together to rehabilitate the victims of this tragedy.
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