Giving Compass' Take:
- Disaster philanthropy, particularly to address floods in Pakistan, provides financial assistance and recovery for the short-term but long-term and systemic aid that addresses climate change needs to happen.
- How can donors help with climate reparations?
- Read more about disaster recovery and relief.
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The news of Pakistan’s ongoing climate catastrophe has crowded out the headlines, but the long-term and actual effects of Pakistan’s floods are yet to come.
The devastation has caused over 1,350 casualties and over $13 billion in damages. While Pakistan has suffered floods almost every year, scientists say that 75 percent more rain is falling during the monsoon weeks. For a nation that is already suffering massive IMF debts, The flooding catastrophe will be the biggest propellor of death and impoverishment for years to continue.
The floods are triggered by ‘monster monsoons‘, that shower over Pakistan almost every rainy season. It is estimated by UNICEF that a total of 33 million individuals have been affected and 16 million of them are children. The Sindh province is affected the most, and disease and famine, are disproportionally affecting poor areas. As the long-term effects unravel, cases of water-borne diseases, infections, and skin diseases have already been reported. Villages, schools, farmlands, and hospitals have been overrun, as one-third of the nation remains underwater. The cost of rebuilding these cities will take years or even decades, and the lack of cohesive sustained governments will make this even harder.
Many countries have sent aid to Pakistan over the past few weeks. Canada has pledged $25 million to Pakistan, the US $30 million, and the UK £15 million. The United Nations launched a $160 million aid plan to help with immediate aid for a ‘ life-saving response’ for 5.4 million people in need. The Former Prime Minister of Pakistan, Imran Khan even held multiple live telethons to fundraise for the crisis. After calling out to inbound and overseas Pakistanis, he has raised over 5 billion Pakistani Rupees ($22.7 million).
Philanthropic organisations are working to get on-the-ground assistance. Disaster philanthropy is holding recovery fundraisers to provide shelter, food, and health in Pakistan. According to Candid reports many corporate grants have been given out as well, Bestway Group donated $1 million to help people affected by the floods, Meta employees raised 125 million rupees ($1.6 million), and H&M Foundation provided $250,000 in funding to Red Cross/Red Crescent to support the people affected.
While all this aid is beneficial for immediate financial assistance, it is not enough to create change on the systemic level. This form of philanthropy is merely a drop in the hat for a nation like Pakistan which experiences this and various other climate catastrophes consistently at the hands of the Global North. Candid noted in their 2018 Annual Review of Global Foundation Grantmaking, that Aid sent by nations in the global north was often restricted and posed a ‘trust gap.’
Read the full article about disaster philanthropy in Pakistan by Aina Marzia at Alliance Magazine.