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Sheirin and his nephew received aid during the Swat crisis. Credits: Hamish Cairns/Caritas

Sheirin and his nephew received aid during the Swat crisis.
Credits: Hamish Cairns/Caritas

More than two and a half million people were forced from their homes as a result of clashes between the Pakistan army and militants in the Swat Valley. The district used to be known as the ‘Switzerland of Pakistan’ and attracted thousands of tourists who came for skiing and mountain walking – but that was before the fighting started.

Sheirin, who has lived for 70 years in the village of Malamjabar, had to run for his life with his wife and eight children. “One of my nephews was killed,”he said.

Thanks to Caritas, Sheirin and his family received a package of relief items shortly after reaching a safe refuge. Caritas supported 385,000 people who had to flee their homes in Swat in 2009, providing food, healthcare, shelter, sanitation, clean water and household items.