Pakistan Bible Society is reaching out to Christian communities to provide baskets of essential items to those whose homes, cattle and crops have been swept away by the monsoonal floods last year which affected three-quarters of the country.
According to the latest news updates, 1569 people have died, over 12,000 were injured and 33 million affected by the floods.
“The situation is very bad, especially among the affected people who have lost all their things, households, everything they have got,” says Justus Nassir, marketing officer of Pakistan Bible Society (PBS).
“The government, along with the army, is doing so much.”
PBS staff including Nassir are travelling with a church minister, Pastor Sharjeel, to the first of three affected areas in the Khyber Pakhtoon Khawn (KPK) Province, close to the border with Afghanistan.
“He will provide us with the opportunity to meet with affected Christian people and we will give them a basket of medicines, such as medicated skin creams, food items, toiletries, pillows, blankets, bedsheets, tents and milk for children,” Nassir told Eternity.
“We will also provide Bibles and New Testaments to the Christians. We plan to reach these people with the help of Pakistan Army, local Christian leaders, pastors and volunteers.”
Five million people remain exposed to or are living close to flooded areas.
Nassir explains that the flood catastrophe has led to a large increase in viruses from mosquitoes, such as malaria and dengue fever, in the affected areas, so they will also provide vaccinations and preventative medicines.
As of this month, an estimated five million people remain exposed to or are living close to flooded areas, with hundreds of thousands remaining displaced.
PBS has put together an appeal called Helping the Helpless in Flood Catastrophes through which it hopes to raise funds to provide basic amenities and household items, along with Bibles and New Testaments, to about 2000 Christian families in three areas affected by the floods. It will also reach out to about 1200 Hindu families.
After KPK Province, the PBS team will work with pastors in South Punjab and Upper Sindh Provinces.
“The people are going through a lot of emotional turmoil due to the loss of loved ones, belongings and property. There is an urgent need for clothes, water containers, food, medicine, milk for children, blankets, bed sheets, pillows, etc. These people are helpless and are under the open sky, and looking to other hands for food and other goods. Their children are crying for milk, water and food. Some NGOs are also approaching these people with goods, but these efforts are not enough,” Nassir said.
“Especially the Christian-affected people are looking for help and encouragement from the Christian organisations such as Pakistan Bible Society, which is a recognised and well-reputed institute in the country. We hope that these people will also start reading the Bible regularly and grow in their faith after they are settled.
“We hope the non-Christian people will also change their behaviour by seeing and experiencing Christian love and cooperation through receiving the goods. We will also distribute Bibles among the Christian families and some New Testaments too will be made available if the non-Christian affected people show interest together with children’s books among the children.”
As well as asking for funds, Nassir also requested prayer for the victims and for the staff of the Bible Society as they travel. “May God keep us safe from all the viruses and all sorts of dangers.”
You can contribute to this appeal by clicking here.