One hundred days into Pakistan’s worst ever flooding crisis, United Nations humanitarian coordinators are drawing attention to the plight of the millions of Pakistanis who remain in urgent need of support, following the rains and floods which swept away entire communities.
The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) says that the situation for those impacted by the floods is desperate, with an estimated 14 million people in need of urgent assistance. Many face serious challenges on a daily basis, relying on the supply of safe drinking water, food, health care and shelter, especially as the harsh winter begins and temperatures drop in northern Pakistan.
“At this time it is critical, more than ever, for countries to demonstrate commitment to the people of Pakistan,” said the Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Assistance to Pakistan, Rauf Engin Soysal. “Millions remain in need of immediate help,” he said.
In addition, the Pakistan Floods Relief and Early Recovery Response Plan – set up by the Government of Pakistan and the United Nations to help meet the immediate relief needs of flood-affected communities – is still in urgent need of support. So far, its funding is only at 40 per cent of the required $1.93 billion.
“The initial solidarity demonstrated in the early days of the crisis must be re-energized if Pakistan is not to be forgotten,” said the UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Pakistan, Martin Mogwanja.
OCHA says resources are crucial for relief and rehabilitation operations to meet the large scale needs of those affected by the floods in the south, while providing temporary shelter in the north with ‘one warm room’ in every home to keep flood-affected families warm while they rebuild.
The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) warns that without significant new funding now, life assistance and recovery work will need to be scaled back in the new year. UNICEF has received $134 million of its $251 million revised appeal – without additional funding, programmes and staffing in child health, education, protection, water and sanitation and nutrition will be cut back.
The UN and its partners have provided food and emergency shelter for some six million people in the country over the last month, emergency shelter has been provided for 3.9 million people, 2.5 million receive safe drinking water, and 5.9 million people have benefited from essential health care.