Currently, the country is reeling from a natural disaster of astounding proportions: it is being hammered by the worst floods in the last 80 years, due to which over 2000 people have already died and over 20 million have been rendered homeless. Alarmingly, up to 3.5 million children who have survived are now at high risk of contracting deadly water-borne diseases. By partnering with the Karachi Relief Trust (KRT), we are aiming to provide immediate help to flood affectees as well as long-term assistance with re-construction.
The Karachi Relief Trust is an NGO experienced in providing relief in earthquake and flood affected areas. They have conducted an extensive survey of Pakistan - from the first hit village near Munda Head Works to the evacuated villages of Sindh. Our joint mission is to assist 5000 families rehabilitate and restore their lives by providing them with basic household and food items, and the necessary tools with which they can reconstruct their homes.
KARACHI RELIEF PROGRAM 2010
Our immediate rehabilitation efforts aim to adopt relief camps in Thul, Shikarpur, Ghotki, Sukkur, Nourshro Firoz, Moro and Jhal Magsi and provide those affected with basic household and food items. We are also giving rations (designed to cover a 30 day period) to families in Munda Head Works and Nowshera, and deploying 50,000 EPA certified Life Straw Family Instant Microbial Purifiers to provide up to 10 million liters of purified drinking water each day.
Our long-term strategy aims to embark on a comprehensive program of assisting communities in building houses, supporting infrastructure and water supply schemes. We are focused on building practical, low-cost, and environmentally sensitive housing units which will alleviate a cycle of poverty, and provide living spaces which will inspire productivity and upward mobility. With this in mind, we have designed 2 different types of housing modules factoring in the climatic and topographical variations between flood affected areas in different provinces of the country:
In order to encourage the use of indigenous materials, for the Northern Areas, a design has been created which makes ample use of brick – as this material is present in abundance in this region. These houses also have a basic plan comprising a veranda, kitchen, bathroom, 1-2 bedrooms (which can accommodate 3-4 beds), with a pre-cast concrete roof. Moreover, these designs are also aesthetically driven to provide a therapeutic environment for psychologically traumatized victims of this tragedy, and to signify a sense of recovery. Hence, we are proposing a simple embellishment in the form of a perforated veranda wall, and a matching perforated parapet. The estimated cost of each house is PKR 150,000 + 25,000 = 175,000 (USD 2,035).
For villages in the South, a design utilizing stabilized earth (as dug mud block) has been created, as this is the indigenous mode of construction in these areas. These houses have a basic plan comprising a veranda, kitchen, bathroom,1 and 2 bedrooms (which can accommodate 3-4 beds), but because of the hot climate prevalent in these areas, these houses will have thatched roofs, similar to the existing thatched huts in the province of Sindh. Bearing in mind that many of these villages were in a dilapidated condition even before the devastation wreaked by the floods, we are driven by their need for a holistic approach that will resurrect rather than just restore the area. Hence, we are proposing structures with natural ventilation and lighting, and a simple ornamentation detail on the veranda wall as well as on the façades of the houses, which are inspired by the traditional motifs seen in the crafts of this area. We hope that the aesthetic considerations that are factored into these designs will improve the quality of life of the residents, imbuing them with a sense of comfort and belonging. The estimated cost of each house is PKR 75000 + 25000 = 100,000 (USD 1,163).
Please note that this project is in its initial stages of implementation, and we would be very grateful for any donations to help alleviate the plight of the 20 million + people who have been devastated by this natural disaster.
COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AND SOCIAL INFRASTRUCTURE
Our community development planning services will be based on a capacity building and training program for creating self- sustainability. Hence, this project is community based, and owner-driven, with an objective to train the affectees to build their own homes and also to empower them with skills for their livelihood. Training centers, each with their own block-making sites will be established so that villagers are given extensive workshops on construction techniques, carpentry and masonry. Additionally, we will establish village council committees which will organize and motivate the local population to participate in the rebuilding effort, and we are hoping that by involving the locals (including women) in the decision making and reconstruction process, the program will bring these communities together, and provide avenues for self-sustainability.
As part of the rural rehabilitation and reconstruction process, we are also focused on rebuilding water supply systems in villages affected by the floods, providing potable water under the Pak Pani project. Additionally, we are formulating environmental protection plans by incorporating renewable energy solutions and incorporating locally available resources to improve the built environment. Moreover, we are looking into providing spaces for grain storage, livestock etc, and rebuilding social infrastructure such as masjids, schools, waste management systems and a community centre (if donors allow). We are hoping that our community development model will inspire residents to take ownership of public spaces so that they take the initiative to maintain them by establishing councils/committees. We are also hoping that by participating in our regeneration project, these committees will be empowered with the organizational skills required to govern and to access financial resources to improve civil infrastructure in the future. Our aim is to exit the program once these communities have been civically, socially and economically empowered.
ADOPT A VILLAGE
Below are the estimated costs of varying Villages(small,medirm, large), which include cost of homes, infrastructure, water provision,sanitation along with communal space development.
North -PKR 150,000 + 25,000 = 175,000 (USD 2,035).
South-PKR 75,000 + 25,000 = 100,000 (USD 1,163).
• Small Village comprising of 10-15 Family Houses
$ 26,500- $ 40,000
South: Rs 1,300,000 - Rs 1,950,000
$15,200- $ 22,700
• Medium Village comprising of 20-35 Family Houses
$ 59,100- $103,300
South: Rs 290,000- Rs 5,075,000
$ 33,750- $ 59,100
• Large Village comprising of 40-50 Family Houses
$122,100- $ 152,650
South: Rs 6,000,000 - Rs 7,500,000
$ 69,800 - $87,250