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Relief and recovery assistance in the wake of unprecedented monsoon flooding - In 2011, ACTED Pakistan focused on the provision of recovery assistance to vulnerable, flood and conflict-affected populations in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK), Punjab and Sindh provinces, addressing the persistent needs for sustainable shelter, food security, water and sanitation, education and community infrastructure interventions. ACTED also responded to the humanitarian needs of populations in Southern Sindh who were affected by widespread monsoon flooding in August 2011. In parallel, ACTED has been working to support families recovering from recent disasters by improving community resilience and launching longer-term development initiatives aimed at promoting access to income-generating opportunities and basic services.
Six months on: supporting the recovery of disaster-affected populations
In 2010, Pakistan experienced unprecedented flooding across Khyber Pakhtunkwa, Punjab and Sindh provinces, causing immense damage to water and sanitation facilities, agricultural land, homes and community infrastructure such as schools and roads. At the start of 2011, many needs of flood-affected families remained unmet. Further, prices were noticeably rising across the country, hindering access to food and other basic goods, and continued fighting in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) led to the displacement of thousands of families, putting a strain on the already limited resources of host communities. In response to these needs, ACTED provided integrated, multi-sectoral early recovery aid to flood and conflict-affected families throughout the country. This assistance has included permanent shelter construction, the provision of clean water and sanitation facilities and support for the resumption of livelihoods activities through agricultural input distributions and trainings, the promotion of micro-businesses for women, and the rehabilitation of productive community infrastructure. ACTED has worked to enhance the resilience and preparedness of affected communities by mainstreaming Disaster Risk Reduction principles in all of its interventions, ensuring that humanitarian assistance provided contributes to addressing longer-term needs and challenges facing target populations. ACTED has also played an active role in facilitating the coordination of humanitarian partners by supporting the cluster system at the national, provincial and district levels, as well as through partnerships with and the provision of technical support to relevant government bodies.
Providing emergency relief to newly flood-affected communities
As families in Sindh began to recover from the flooding, the South of the province was struck again by monsoon flooding in August 2011. These rains affected an estimated 8.9 million people and led to the destruction of close to 800,000 houses and the loss of 70% of food crops in affected areas, leaving an estimated 43% of the population severely food insecure. Already present in Sindh, ACTED was in a position to immediately begin addressing the needs of flood-affected populations, along with Alliance2015 partners. ACTED’s initial response included the distribution of food, basic household items and emergency shelter kits to protect beneficiaries from extreme conditions, along with the installation of life-saving water and sanitation facilities. These were complemented by the provision of health and hygiene items and trainings to address the high risk of disease due to large amounts of standing water. ACTED also worked to ensure that affected families were able to generate income and meet their basic needs, notably through the implementation of cash for work schemes. Finally, ACTED supported authorities’ efforts to coordinate the humanitarian response by acting as the district focal point for the shelter and water, sanitation and hygiene clusters in target areas.
Emergency response preparedness whilst enabling disaster-affected communities’ development
By the end of 2011, many flood-affected families in Southern Sindh were still displaced alongside inundated and destroyed villages. ACTED is committed to the continued support for these communities’ efforts to rebuild their lives and will remain prepared to respond to the needs of conflict and disaster-affected populations throughout the country, including families expected to be displaced as a result of ongoing conflict in FATA. However, as communities begin to recover from the natural and man-made disasters that have affected Pakistan over recent years, ACTED is looking to build on its global expertise and experience gained through humanitarian and recovery interventions to address the long-term, systemic challenges facing vulnerable populations in Pakistan. In line with its vision of Linking Relief, Rehabilitation and Development (LRRD), ACTED aims to provide integrated solutions that will bridge the gap between recovery and long-term sustainable development. With this in mind, ACTED plans to design and implement programmes in the coming years that continue meeting the needs of target communities throughout its areas of intervention in the fields of livelihoods and poverty reduction, governance and community development, disaster management and preparedness and access to basic services.