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Emergency Response to the Ziarat Earthquake 2008

On 29th October 2008 the south-western areas of Balochistan Ziarat, Khanozai and Pishin were hit by a massive earthquake having magnitude of 6.4. The severe jolt resulted in death of 316 people. The disaster resulted destroying hundreds of homes in the area and causing 316 deaths and 350 injured. Over 70,000 people, including 30,000 children, have been left homeless in quake-hit Balochistan. In district Ziarat more than 160 casualties have been recorded with more than 500 people injured. The number of houses damaged in Ziarat is approximately 2,500, Displacing an estimated population of 17,500 (total population of the district is 100,000). 

SEHER responded and initiated its relief activities from the very second day of disaster in Ziarat. At initial stage SEHER Team provided cooked food, medical services, cloths, blankets, health & hygiene kits, milk, juices, packed readymade food, and cereals. The effected people from far away and unreachable villages were neglected in provision of relief so SEHER reach out these people and provided them the basic human needs in disaster. 

Child Protection Efforts

During relief activities SEHER focused the child protection and education segments. SEHER initiated Community Based Child Protection Project with the financial and technical support to strengthen the community led support mechanism and provide an enabling environment to the children where they can develop to their optimum potential. 14 child Friendly Spaces, 11 inclusive learning friendly classrooms, were established to provide children psychosocial support, make them learn techniques of Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR), and enable them to learn in a more creative and constructive way. 20 women & man child Protection groups, and 20 child clubs were formed to strengthen the protection mechanism. 632 male and female children were registered in Child friendly spaces, 445 girls and boys were registered at inclusive learning friendly classrooms and 128 out of school children were enrolled in the result of Back to School campaign. 

Education for Earthquake affected Children

SEHER executed a project named as Education & Protection for Earthquake  affected children of Ziarat. At the initial stage 30 Temporary Learning Centers in Ziarat district and 8 in Harnai District. 827 girls and 1028 boys were benefited and provided alternative learning facility, recreational services, and opportunity for creative expression and learning to cope with trauma. In the targeted villages, parents teachers school management committees and women village education committees were strengthened and reformed to able them participate in educational activities. 

Six transitional school shelters were constructed with the support of UNESCO, while 22 with the support of support of UNICEF to revive the education system for children. These Shelters were equipped with child friendly play ground, WES facilities, furniture, teaching and reading materials. The children were provided with school shoes and bags.

Psychosocial Support

The second phase of the project provided psychosocial support in 40 villages of Ziarat district, building capacity of 60 government school teachers, formed 40 children groups, and construct 22 transitional School Shelters.

After completion of the construction, attendance of teachers & students, participation of children in creative learning, and better utilization of stationary and equipment was ensured. The children groups to create awareness and protect child rights were formed and made responsible. SEHER responded the emergency with Technical and Financial Support of UNICEF, Save the Children Sweden, UNICEF and various local philanthropists. As two UCs (Union Council kuch and UC Kawas) were badly affected. House and public buildings were either completely collapsed or in a very dangerous conditions in which living was not possible. The necessities of life were either lost or under the debris. Hence SEHER decided to start its relief work from provision of cooked food and food supplement for children. Later on, the sphere of activities was expanded to child protection and inclusive education in the areas. 

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