In response to the drought-hit deaths of more than 121 children in Tharparkar, HANDS Pakistan has declared a state of emergency with provision of Rs. 50 million financial aid. HANDS Advocacy team has also appealed the affluent civil society to come forward in supporting the disaster victims of Tharparkar, while protesting the weakness of resource management in the area at government level.
In coordination of supplies from UNICEF, HANDS’ Disaster Management staff has initiated its services by deploying 200 health facilitators in more than 400 villages, with 200,000 people, of Taluka Mithi and Taluka Diplo. HANDS Drought Relief Emergency Response Center has been established at HANDS District Office, Mithi, Tharparkar, for emergency response in any affected area.
The community is initially being screened for cases of Moderate Acute Malnutrition (MAM) and Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM) complications to be referred to Nutrition Stabilization Centre at District Headquarter Hospital (DHQ), Mithi.
According to GM, Disaster Management, HANDS, “Fortunately, the recent formation of HANDS’ nutrition management teams helped in implementing an immediate vertical action plan in response to the famine emergency killing over hundred children. Our facility based nutritional management approach, static and mobile teams will be providing adequate nutritional care and treatment to children less than 05 years of age with SAM and MAM, pregnant and lactating women with acute malnutrition. Also, micronutrient deficiencies would be overcome through provision of micronutrients, vitamin and de-worming.”
Apart from supervising provinces/districts, HANDS Disaster Management is in coordination with PDMA, Relief Department, Government of Sindh, NGOS, INGOs and funding partners.