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One year on, Pakistanís flood survivors recovering and rebuilding lives


Islamabad, - - A year after Pakistanís worst floods in modern history killed around 2,000 and displaced millions, hundreds of thousands of adults and children are steadily recovering and rebuilding their lives with better access to clean water, schools and child-friendly spaces, thanks to support from Plan International and its partners.

As the heavy monsoon rains left a fifth of the country under water and displaced an eighth of its 170,000,000 population, Plan ramped up its local operations to provide emergency relief for a quarter of a million people, and will reach out to provide recovery and rehabilitation support to over 1,000,000 people in the worst affected areas by September 2011.
Children key

ďThe floods hit the most vulnerable, especially children, the hardest and Plan is now focusing on longer-term projects to better prepare communities to face natural disasters in the future,Ē Plan Pakistanís country director Haider Yaqub said.

ďChildren are affected by natural disasters in complex and far-reaching ways. Their well-being is key to communitiesí long-term recovery,Ē Yaqub continued.

To help children process the tragedy and recover, Plan and local partners have set up 301 child-friendly spaces where children can play, share and talk freely. Some 20,300 children have been provided with psychosocial support delivered through structured and supervised play and learning activities in a safe space.

Plan has been working in the worst-hit parts in the south and east of the country, home to those affected by the floods. In the province of Sindh, in the south-east, efforts have been concentrated in Ghotki, Khairpur, and Thatta, 3 of the provinceís 23 districts. In the eastern province of Punjab, Planís projects are in the districts of Layyah, Muzaffargarh, and Rajanpur, the worst affected of the provinceís 36 districts.
Reopening schools

Plan will continue to work with local partners to help reopen 390 schools, to roll out 23 cash-for-work schemes, to improve rural sanitation and to undertake other long-term rehabilitation and disaster preparedness initiatives.

Clean water and sanitation are integral parts of any humanitarian crisis response, to avoid diseases and malnutrition. Water contamination and sanitation are estimated to be responsible for 60% of child mortality cases in Pakistan, where 45% of the rural community defecate in the open.

To address the sanitation problem more widely, Plan has initiated a community-led total sanitation approach which will reach over 1,000,000 people in rural areas across 30 flood-affected districts.

Plan has been operating in Pakistan since 1997, helping marginalised children to access their rights to health, education, livelihood support and protection. Through long-term programmes we work with around 150 communities across the country, benefiting over 50,000 children.

Editorís notes:

*Plan works in 50 developing countries across Asia, Africa, and the Americas to promote child rights and lift millions of children out of poverty. Child-centred community development is our approach to child poverty reduction.
*Plan has been operating in Asia since 1948. We work in 14 countries, helping thousands of very poor communities to fight child poverty and help children realise their full potential.


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