- On Wednesday Oct. 29, 2008 an earthquake struck Balochistan, the South-Western province of Pakistan. The casualty count has been low for such an earthquake so far, (reported just over 200) largely due to this being a remote and thinly populated area. However, over 35,000 people have been reported homeless, in many cases entire villages having lost their homes.
- Hidaya's team in Pakistan, immediately contacted the local authorities and its volunteers in the area to advance and relief teams can be dispatched to the disaster area.
- The earthquake struck before dawn, and on the same day around 5:30 PM (local time), Hidaya Foundation dispatched a four-member Advance Team to the earthquake areas in Balochistan from its Pakistan Central Operations (PCO) located in Shikarpur. The purpose was to assess the situation on the ground and provide feedback to PCO for the preparation of relief supplies as well as making arrangements for staging and distribution of relief supplies on arrival.
- The Advance Team reached the next day on Oct. 30th around 1:00 PM in the provincial capital Quetta, and around 3:00 PM in the earthquake areas.
- The first batch of relief supplies left around 2:00 PM on Oct. 30, 2008 from Hidaya Abbotabad District Operations on a 10 wheeler truck carrying 166 winterized tents.
- The same day on another 10 wheeler, 12,000 pounds of winter clothing (jackets, pullovers etc) left from Shikarpur District Operations along with dry ration food supplies (over 11,000 lbs of wheat flour, over 2,750 lbs of lentils, over 1,100 lbs of sugar and 130 lbs of tea). This dry ration is sufficient for 250 families for 15 days.
- The village of Waam which is approx. 90 km from Quetta with approximately 120 houses, was found to be completely destroyed.
- After visiting Waam, the team reached at village Warchoom at about 5:00 pm which is about 8 kms away from Waam. The population of Warchoom includes about 150 homes and 70% of this village was also destroyed.
- The Team found out that in this village there was a family whose total family members were 16 and all family members died.
- The team spent the night of Oct 30 at a rest-house in the town of Ziarat. Four aftershocks (two major ones) kept the team awake throughout the night. During each aftershock, the team had to safely and quickly get outdoors, in case of the roof collapsing.
- The Advance Team's initial feedback is that tents and ration is the urgent need of the people at this time.
- On Oct 31, 2008 at 9:00 AM, the team initiated the registration process for the assessment of families' needs.
- Around 10:00 AM, supplies arrived in Quetta which were sent from Shikarpur District Operations. These supplies are being moved into smaller trucks and then dispatched to disaster-affected areas.
- Hidaya’s Advanced Team started registration of affected villages from the towns of Warchum and Kawas until relief supplies are reached.
- Giving details about the area team briefed that two Union Councils of Ziarat District, Kawas & Kach are damaged the most.
- Union Council Kawas includes the villages of Werchum, Kawas, Spinzadi & Zargi.
- Union Council Kach includes the villages of Kaan, Chunari, Serkhazi, Wam, Tungiyan, Maangi
- Among all the above villages Werchum, Kawas & Wam are affected the most. Hidaya team completed registration of all the families of Warchum and Kawas on Oct. 30, 2008 and will continue registration of Wam and other less affected villages on Oct. 31.
- Additional team members also reached to earthquake areas who will be staring relief supplies distribution staring Nov. 1, 2008.
- Werchum: About 80 families were affected. Only 51 families were registered by Hidaya team. 15 families moved to Quetta, 10 families responded that we are not in need of any help. In Werchum, 18 people are dead, including 8 children, 2 females, & 6 males. 15 people are injured and are in Civil Hospital Quetta. (All dead are connected to well off families).
- Kawas: There were 70 houses in this village with the population of 334 total male & female. Few families have already migrated out of area due to continuous after shocks every 30 to 50 minutes. Only 6 people are injured and are in reasonable good condition. No deaths are reported in Kawas.
- Hidaya's team comprising of 13 people has returned from the earthquake area after completing the first phase of relief work. Per the team's feedback, a tremendous amount of supplies have arrived in the area by other non-profits who arrived in the weeks after the earthquake.
- Per Hidaya's team, 80-90% of the affected people are reasonably well off and own apple orchards etc. in the area, therefore having the capability of rebuilding their lives on their own.
For the latest pictures from the Earthquake areas Click Here