Ten years after the devastating earthquake of 2005, a massive 7.5 earthquake struck northern Pakistan on October 26, 2015.
Our national director for Pakistan estimates that 500 people have died as a result of the recent quake, and more than 3000 injured individuals are overwhelming the local hospitals and clinics. Now there are reports that 10,000 homes have been destroyed – perhaps displacing the equivalent of the entire population Wichita, Kansas, or New Haven, Connecticut.
Additionally, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province’s Education Department reports that 813 schools in its districts have been extensively or partially damaged. Beyond the quake and aftershocks, landslides have significantly hindered the Pakistani government’s rescue and recovery operations. Temperatures are at or below freezing at night, and many survivors are afraid to return inside for fear of further collapses. Snowfall usually begins here in December, but this year the snow began falling a week ago!
While the U.S. Agency for International Development signaled it was ready to provide emergency shelter and relief supply kits, Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has indicated he is turning down offers of international aid. “We will try our best to deal with this disaster using our own resources,” he said. However, Pakistan’s track record of dealing with such a crisis is dismal. Despite the earnest discussions following the earthquake a decade ago, the implementation of more stringent building codes and the training of students and teachers in earthquake preparedness have not occurred.
But, of all people, FMI donors are uniquely positioned to give direct aid to this region.
FMI-relayed aid still gets delivered to those who need it because it is delivered through ‘boots on the ground’ that are already on site – our indigenous partners who serve right in the impacted areas. Aid delivered via our supported church planters and evangelists comes with the opportunity to powerfully share the gospel to people who are currently eager to hear the messages of the hope and mercy found in Jesus Christ. Every gift of $50 provides blankets and sets of warm clothes for two people. A gift of $100 goes even further, providing blankets and sets of warm clothes for four people plus sufficient food for one week. Click here now to donate to FMI’s Tangible Resource account, and your gift will be speeded on its way to reflect the unshakable compassion of Christ to those whose world has been upended.