An estimated 5 million people in Pakistan have been displaced from their homes due to Taliban driven terrorism, military conflict, sectarian violence, and human rights abuse since 2004, and the situation has been further aggravated by natural disasters such as the 2005 earthquake and the 2010 floods. Real Medicine Foundation arrived in Pakistan in late 2005, and has since continued to provide humanitarian support to internally displaced persons (IDPs), underserved communities, and vulnerable groups.
Building on local relationships and expertise developed through our recent earthquake relief and ongoing health clinic project in District Swat, RMF Pakistan has begun a 6-month program to assist IDP families returning to their homes in high altitude, remote areas of District Swat. The program has been made possible by support from LDS Charities and targets 162 of the most vulnerable IDP families repatriated to District Swat within the previous 2–3 months.
Before having to flee their homes, most IDP families were already poor and barely living hand-to-mouth. They have now returned to homes destroyed by the Taliban and the natural elements, with all their belongings missing. To help our targeted 162 families through the winter, RMF is providing the following relief:
- Non-perishable food rations
- Coal for heating and cooking
- Plastic floor mats, carpets, and blankets
- Warm clothing tailored to each family
- Family hygiene kits
- Menstrual hygiene management kits
Returning IDP families and many other residents of these remote areas in District Swat have limited access to health services. To support IDP families and other vulnerable community members, RMF Pakistan is providing health services through two clinics:
Satellite clinic: This semi-mobile outreach clinic offers basic primary healthcare services and refers patients requiring additional treatment or diagnostics to our hub clinic.
Hub clinic: RMF’s existing stationary clinic in the village of Nagoha, UC Barikot provides comprehensive primary health care, including routine pathology investigations and ultrasound services. The hub clinic is a referral point to our semi-mobile outreach clinic and also operates as the field base camp for the winter relief project, providing space for office staff and storage of supplies.
- Sub-zero temperatures
- Damaged homes with uninsulated floors
- Increased winter prices for firewood and coal
- Increased winter prices for food
- Lack of warm clothing and hygiene items
- Limited access to health care
RMF will continue to distribute winter relief items to 162 recently repatriated IDP families, easing the transition back into their home communities. We will also continue to provide comprehensive primary health care to IDPs and other vulnerable community members, listening to their concerns and remaining alert to new service opportunities.
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