United States Assists with Clean Drinking Water for Pakistan
Washington — Approximately 32 million liters of safe drinking water and related supplies will reach about 40,000 Pakistani homes because of recent donations that have been made to the U.S.-sponsored Pakistan Relief Fund ( http://www.america.gov/st/develop-english/2010/September/20100908113810kjleinad0.1696283.html ), the U.S. Agency for International Development says.
USAID and the State Department will deliver a number of water purification kits, including buckets and filtering cloths, to Pakistanis affected by the worst humanitarian disaster in Pakistan’s history, the department said in a statement September 9.
“We continue to work hard providing aid to the people of Pakistan, and this additional assistance will help with one of the most pressing needs — that of clean water,” USAID Administer Rajiv Shah said. “With more than one-fifth of the nation under water, it is critical we continue to respond in a quick, agile and creative manner to help confront increasing levels of disease, dehydration and hunger.”
The United States has committed more than $258 million for flood recovery and relief efforts in Pakistan since the floods began in late July.
Shah visited Pakistan recently and has been working with the United Nations, U.S. humanitarian disaster experts and others engaged in relief efforts to determine the most urgent needs. USAID has been working closely with the Pakistan National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) as well as the Interior Ministry in providing relief supplies, support and assistance.
“It was clear that there continues to be an acute need for clean water, especially as concerns of water-borne and other diseases mount,” the department said in a prepared statement. “In addition to the packets, associated commodities will be purchased from the local Pakistani market and distributed to local [nongovernmental organizations].”
The Pakistan Relief Fund was established by the U.S. government through the State Department to allow the public to give money to help the more than 20 million Pakistanis who have been affected by the floods.
The United States has airlifted additional emergency relief supplies into Pakistan in the last two days. The most recent flights were loaded with more than 85,850 blankets and 46,800 10-liter water containers, USAID said.
In total, USAID has provided 13 mobile water treatment units that each produce enough clean water for 60,000 people a day; 10 water bladders each with the capacity to store 20,000 liters of clean water; 151,750 water containers, each with a capacity of 10 liters; 58 Zodiac inflatable rescue boats; 96 concrete saws and saw blades; 194,380 blankets; and 6,663 rolls of plastic sheeting for the construction of temporary shelters. These relief supplies brought in from USAID warehouses in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates; Italy; and the United States are in addition to the supplies purchased locally by USAID partners that are being provided to those in need.
The United States also has provided other civilian and military in-kind assistance in the form of halal meals, prefabricated steel bridges and other infrastructure support, as well as air support to and within Pakistan to transport goods and rescue people, valued at approximately $26.3 million (more than 2.23 billion rupees).
(Distributed by the Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State. Web site: http://www.america.gov)