Monday, October 24, 2005

Relief Efforts

"In terms of logistics, the difficult terrain makes this one of most challenging relief operations ever undertaken," U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan told reporters at U.N. World Headquarters in New York Wednesday, October 19, 2005. In issuing an unusual personal appeal for additional help, he warned, "A second, massive wave of deaths will happen if we do not step up our efforts now."
(Source: )

Shaken by the fact that millions affected by the quake are still homeless and without shelter in several villages across Pakistan, a small group of friends across Pakistan, the United States and the United Kingdom are working together to provide shelter as fast as possible to areas that are not being reached by any relief agency. Comprising of young professionals and graduate students, the group has been documenting its progress using this blog.

The group is focused on:

  1. Soliciting and channeling cash donations
  2. Researching appropriate avenues of obtaining high-quality shelter, especially tents
  3. Finding effective distribution networks and engaging in follow-up

The group has implemented a three-pronged strategy of fundraising and reaching the affected while purchasing a combination of different types of tents available in Pakistan:

1. Soliciting and Channeling Donations:

As of November 5th, 2005, funds are collected mainly via ADP's website and forwarded on to Pakistan. This is done periodically to pay tent suppliers, with whom the Karachi-based teams have made prior arrangements.

On an average the group has been raising PKR 50,000 (USD $833) a day since its formation on October 17, 2005.

2. Shelter Research and Purchasing (see separate Shelter Purchasing Page here)

3.Reliable Distribution Networks to Needed Areas: (see separate Shelter Distribution Page here)

Phase II Plans

The earthquake's affects on the survivors will last a lifetime and both the rehabilitation and redevelopment phase will need to continue for decades to help return these areas to some form of normality. As the images from the TV screens become less frequent, the group will continue its efforts and assist those caught up in this natural disaster, by continuing to pursue some of the ideas originally proposed and raising funds to aid the redevelopment in the region.

There remain a number of issues that are affecting the people in Pakistan – e.g. orphans, livelihood, women's lack of security, food etc. Given that the first snow fell within 48 hours of the quake, the group will concentrate its efforts on delivering shelter to difficult-to-reach areas.

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