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Race against time in Pakistan

The humanitarian crisis in Pakistan is unprecedented and requires an unprecedented response. It must be taken seriously.

So far, the international response has been insufficient for a crisis that will eclipse the Asian tsunami and the earthquake in Haiti in scale. History will judge us harshly if the international community does not respond urgently and adequately.

Basic needs

We are in a race against time to deliver basic needs like food, water, shelter and medicine. We need to prevent a second wave of the emergency. In the short-term, thousands of sick children are at risk of dying through dehydration and preventable disease. In the medium-term, there is risk of a hunger crisis developing due to lack of basic seeds and tools.

Drop in the ocean

We must be clear that the UN appeal for $460 million is just what is needed for the initial relief period. However, just over 50% of this has actually been funded so far. It is a drop in the ocean compared to what is needed to keep millions of people alive, rebuild Pakistan and to get basic infrastructure in place.

Emergency need

Underfunding an emergency response like this is potentially putting thousands of lives at risk. Of the 20 million people affected in Pakistan, seven million are now in need of immediate emergency assistance.

Public response

The public have once again dug deep and have been phenomenal in their response so far, for which we are truly grateful. Without their support we would be really struggling to reach those in need. Concern has expanded the number of people we are helping and we are now targeting over 320,000 people with direct assistance.

Governments must do more

Governments around the world must do more. When we see the billions that can be made available for economic stimulus packages and bank bail-outs, what is given to humanitarian situations is paltry by comparison.