Conflict in Pakistan: the Caritas response

A Swat family in a small tent camp in Mardan district. Credits: Hamish Cairns/Caritas

A Swat family in a small tent camp in Mardan district.
Credits: Hamish Cairns/Caritas

Fighting in Pakistan has forced over 2.5 million people from their homes. There are huge gaps in meeting the needs of these people.

Caritas members on the ground are already delivering aid, and are now looking to expand their operations as the humanitarian crisis grows.

At least 85 percent of the people who have fled fighting between government forces and armed groups in North-West Frontier Province are living with host families. The remainder are mostly in camps.

Trocaire Regional Representative in Pakistan Paul Healy said, “The world has forgotten about Pakistan. Or perhaps it is only thinking of this country in terms of ‘war on terror’ and bomb blasts. Innocent people who have been forced from their homes and are in real need of food, shelter, medicine, and counseling.”

Caritas is scaling up.

Caritas Pakistan have identified gaps in health as well as the need for tents. They’re supporting 3000 families in Mardan and Hassan Abdal.

Cordaid (Caritas in the Netherlands) is focusing on quality primary health care for people living in host communities. They’re targeting 150,000 people in Mardan, Swabi, and Charsadda.

CRS (a Caritas member in the US) is providing vouchers so families can acquire shelter materials to meet their own needs in Mardan and Swabi. In addition, CRS is providing cash-for-work to meet a gap in income resulting from livelihood loss.

Caritas Switzerland is working in Mardan and Thesil Mardan providing food, hygiene items and cooking kits for 3.500 affected families living in host communities. The project will be implemented by Caritas Switzerland’s long standing working partner Anatolian Development Foundation, Turkey (ADF).

Trocaire (Caritas Ireland) isfocusing on host communities and the people living with them, working through established humanitarian partners, including Rural Development Program (RDP) and Pakistan Village Development Program (PVDP), in Peshawar, Swabi, Abbotabad, and Mansehra. Partners are focusing on emergency livelihoods support in the form of cash grants or vouchers and protection of women and children in host communities.

Jos de Voogd, Caritas Communication Officer, is in Pakistan writing about Caritas response. Read his blog entries here. 

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