Winters in Pakistan are extremely cold and dry, lasting from December through to February. In December 2014, The World Federation through its Hadith-e-Kisa Blanket Drive distributed 1,830 ‘Razai’ blankets.
Across Iraq, the distress faced by the nation’s people at the hands of the extremist insurgent group known as ISIS (Da’esh) is so great that it is often indescribable – where ‘seeing is believing’. A few weeks ago, The World Federation sent a team member to Iraq to assess the situation there and to gather information that would allow us to chart an effectual relief plan to meet the needs of as many of the 1.8 million displaced people there as possible.
To this end, The World Federation has identified 1,000 vulnerable families who urgently need our help. Our team member had the opportunity to visit many of these families and spoke with them one on one about their plight. Upon his return he said to us:
“I’ve heard too many heart-rending stories of suffering. I’ve seen with my own eyes the dire conditions in which these families are living in and I can tell you that such conditions are simply unacceptable to any decent society. The displaced people of Iraq need our help and they need it now.”
Whilst so many stories narrated to The World Federation on this visit reveal horrors, here are two cases that are representative of the overall plight of the internally displaced people as a whole in Iraq:
STORY 1: A family of 6 lives in a one-room improvised shelter. Within this small space, they must live, eat and sleep. In one of the four corners, they have dug a hole which they have designated as a toilet. With the absence of any water and sanitation systems here, one can only imagine the stench lingering in the air which they must breathe in and the unhygienic conditions of the room – creating a breeding ground for diseases and other health issues.
STORY 2: Umm Zainab, a mother of two witnessed the murder of both of her sons being burnt alive. The atrocity does not end there but further continues to the extent that in order to buy her freedom, she was forced to consume the burnt remains of her two sons. She is now living along the main road between Najaf and Karbala, where she continuously searches for shelter, protection and aid.
Perhaps a few years down the road, the stories of these families will have a different, happier ending. Until then, they urgently need your support to offer new hope for the present and for the future.
PLEASE DONATE: IRAQ RELIEF FUND - SHORT TERM HUMANITARIAN RESPONSE
This Muharram, ‘Welcome a Family’ who is displaced and has found refuge in Najaf, Karbala and areas South of Iraq, by gifting them with a ‘Home Comfort Kit’. Your donation, be it great or small, will mean so much to those in need. Each kit costs $1,000 and includes:
- Winter Aid Packs (blankets, pillows, heaters, clean water)
- Hygiene Kits (towels, toothbrushes, toothpaste, shampoo, dishwashing and laundry detergent, feminine hygiene products, soap and baby diapers
- Emergency shelters and transitional housing
- Food ration
- Water and sanitation services and systems
- Emergency educational facilities
- Emergency healthcare facilities
To download the poster, click the attachment.
Donate directly to your Jamaat Treasurer
For more information, please email [email protected]
This year several individuals, couples and families will be embarking on the spiritual journey of walking from Najaf to Karbala to commemorate Arba’een. These people from different parts of the world will unite to complete an 80km walk through war-torn Iraq from the holy city of Najaf to the land of Karbala. They shall walk for three days during the daytime with the scorching desert sun bearing down upon them and they will rest in the evenings in makeshift tents, when the blistering cold takes over as temperatures rapidly plummet.
In Pakistan’s Baluchistan province, The World Federation has identified 8 homeless families who since the 2010 floods have been living in makeshift shelters. 2 families are living in tents, 3 families are living in mud houses and 3 families are living in straw built dwellings. Our partner in Pakistan described the living condition of these families as “painful”.