Three weeks in Kashmir: Penny Appeal’s rapid response
On 24th September at 4:02pm in Pakistan, a massive earthquake struck Pakistan-administered Kashmir, resulting in hundreds of injuries, the destruction of homes and vital infrastructure, and the loss of 38 precious lives.
2 hours later, Penny Appeal Pakistan’s Emergency Response team was deployed. Three weeks later, the team have managed to help 1,841 of the most terribly affected people in Kashmir.
Watch the video below and read on to find out how we acted swiftly and efficiently, the experiences and feelings of the people we’re supporting in Kashmir, and our sustainable plans for the future.
Penny Appeal’s Emergency Response
Penny Appeal Pakistan’s Emergency Response Team was deployed within two hours of the earthquake. We spoke to local people and organisations from 6pm and worked through the night, and found that the Kashmiri people’s most pressing issues were a growing lack of food and the inability to access clean water.
Thanks to the generosity of people just like you, Penny Appeal Pakistan were able to give Food Packs to 263 families whose homes have been tragically destroyed by the tremor. Our Food Packs are filled with local staples such as lentils, flour and rice, which were designed with plenty of calories and nutrients to feed a family of 7 for three weeks.
We have also given 20-24 litres of clean water to these devastated families, so that they can stay healthy and hygienic – which will also help prevent the spread of deadly cholera and diarrhoea.
Our teams have acted rapidly and given relief to those most affected, and we are so proud of their excellent work. But none of our work is possible without you – our generous donors.
Please keep supporting the Kashmiri people in this difficult time; they need us now more than ever.
Week 4 and beyond…
Our greatest concerns going forward are that of shelter and water.
Officials have announced that the groundwater in many areas has been contaminated by the earthquake. This is extremely worrying for the locals, since most of their water supplies previously came from wells, which are now undrinkable.
Unless we act now, waterborne diseases and diseases exacerbated by a lack of sanitation (such as cholera) could put even more lives at risk.
Penny Appeal are organising a Mobile Water Tanker, which could travel to affected villages and communities to provide fresh, clean water on an ongoing basis.
We’re also working on providing Emergency Shelter to the families who no longer have a home.
The 263 families who we have given emergency food and water to have seen their homes severely damaged or completely destroyed, in a matter of minutes. With winter drawing closer, this is a growing concern. Homes have already been lost. Without our help, lives could be lost too.
The situation is unimaginably difficult for the people affected by this terrifying earthquake. As one elderly woman told us, “There’s fear that it will come again, and my body shakes from this fear”.
But we should take heart that in just over three weeks, we have already made a big difference to Kashmiri families in need – we have made sure that in this uncertain time, they can at least be sure that they have enough to eat and drink.
Together, we can help people survive, rebuild lives and – most importantly – give hope to the hopeless.
We will continue to update you on the progress of our emergency response in Kashmir via email, social media and online. Thank you for your incredible support.
THURSDAY 17 OCT 2019