Critical Aid Reaches More Families Cut Off by Storms in Pakistan
The International Rescue Committee has expanded its emergency relief efforts in Pakistan's North-West Frontier Province following two months of torrential rains, avalanches, flooding and severe snowstorms that have left more than 100,000 people stranded without access to food and medicines.
In the past week, IRC teams were able to reach 280 stricken families in hard-hit Lower Dir district, bringing them food, wheat flour, blankets, warm clothing and construction tools and materials. The IRC also signed separate agreements with the World Food Program and USAID to distribute dry food supplies to a total of 16,000 families in the nine worst affected districts of the province.
A majority of roads continue to be blocked by snow and debris from landslides and avalanches. The IRC is increasingly using donkeys to distribute supplies to the worst affected villages.
Emergency coordinator Farman Ullah said the already difficult aid deliveries are “further aggravated by more torrential rains” and that the death toll is getting higher. “People are dying because of a shortage of food, exposure from the cold weather and lack of medical facilities.”