Flooding in Pakistan – San Diego provides relief
While the floods in Pakistan dissolve homes and destroy lives, international relief flows in quiet trickles. The numbers are astonishing: 1 million homes have perished, leaving an estimated 2 million people homeless. Fortunately, San Diego natives are providing help.
Recent donations have pleasantly surprised individuals such as Omed Habib, who initially thought his garage might offer enough storage space for bags of clothing contributed by friends. “By the end of the day it went from three bags to one dozen,” says Habib, “The next morning I had a total of one hundred bags.” And for once, the rising numbers did not represent a grave foreboding. “We now have about 3 U-Haul trucks worth of clothes,” says Habib.
You cannot attach a single race or religion to the “we” Habib mentions. Volunteers are young and old, Christian and Muslim. With a humanitarian crisis so severe, Omed believes communities will feel emboldened to work together. And communities in San Diego, as well as in Orange County and Los Angeles, have already started.
Nevertheless, there is no such thing as too much aid. This Friday, August 27th, volunteers are needed to load trucks with the bags of supplies collected thus far. Meet Omed and other volunteers at the San Diego MAS Youth Center on Zapata Avenue around 7:30 pm. On Saturday, August 28th, volunteers will sift through and successfully fold, pack and organize all the supplies.
While clothing donations are still needed, other essentials–such as tents, blankets and band-aids– are in high demand. With a severe paucity of clean water, anti-diarrhea medication is also immensely sought. However, Omed believes that first and foremost, you must donate your attention: “Once you understand the gravity of the situation, the possibilities become exponential.”
For more information, visit the group website: www.sandiegotopakistanhelp.com
photos from Giro555 via flickr