Project Hathian - Trip 2 Report
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On my way back from the motorway, I know where to start today’s report. I am compelled to start from the end. I have never been more saddened in my life than now. I feel like busting out with tears but I can’t. Just an hour ago I was asked to visit a school where there was a 22 day old, unwell baby. What I saw and heard was devastating. This small baby was extremely weak. He was not feeding well and did not seem to have gained any weight since birth (something well known as “Failure to Thrive). The baby had frequent episodes of what the parents described as “dauray” or attacks during which the baby’s feet and hands would become blue and he would have some kind of fit as well. This would usually occur during sleep. There was a history of late cry after birth which means that the baby’s brain also may have suffered damage early after birth because he did not breathe initially. Doctors who had seen the baby in Mingora hospital suspected that the baby has a “hole in the heart” (something called the Ventricular Septal Defect in medical terms). All this is something that we do see now and then as doctors. But what was shocking and devastating was the fact that the baby had to be moved out of the incubator where he was after birth because the parents had to migrate in a hurry lest they miss the curfew relaxation. Obviously the baby boy got no treatment after that. We (Project Hathian) took charge of all the expenses that will be required for treatment of this baby. He, along with his parents, will shift to Rawalpindi early tomorrow morning where he will be assessed and treated by the best doctors available. Please pray for the baby as he is in a very serious condition.
I apologize. I could not help but start with this baby’s story as that has touched me deep and that represents a classical example of what the IDPs are going through. I wonder how many other such babies are out there….
Moving on. Today’s mission was to start implementation of a basic distribution plan that was devised for this place. In essence, the IDPs living in houses would be issued a ration card for each family. This ration card, which was already printed, has some basic details about the family that it will represent and also an empty table where the donations to the family will be listed along with the dates. This would help to centralize the distribution to one warehouse where every card holder will come and pick up supplies. This system will also ensure a more transparent and affective way of recording
and subsequent reporting of the distribution. This will, it is hoped, allow us to easily distribute to a much larger number of IDPs in the area.
We were joined up today by two young volunteers Waqas and Ali who are given the duty to issue the ration cards by going door to door. Its worth mentioning and appreciating here that these two young gentlemen will stay overnight and work tomorrow as well. We first went to all known widows and orphan children and issued card to them on a preferential basis. In the next phase, which already was underway when I left for Rawalpindi, the rest of the available ration cards were being issued to the IDPs. We only have about 400 sets of ration available with us right now so we decided to issue only 400 cards.
The IDPs living in some 7 schools are already being given two cooked meals a day from the Lungar (makeshift kitchen) in the main school building. We are currently feeding over 2500 people from this lungar each day Mashaallah
We arranged 3 trucks full of goods for today’s trip. We bought the following items that were necessary for the sustenance of these people.
Powdered Red Chillis
Cooking pans - Daijki
Mosquito repellant coils
Galaxose - D
Clothe washing soaps
Some miscellaneous stuff individually donated
400 odd sets are being made from the goods above each containing essential items to last at least a week or so. A proposal for a one window system is under consideration in which an entry in the ration card will be made at the window and the goods will be handed over to the IDP.
We hope that we are able to set down a system which sustains an easy, affective and transparent distribution mechanism for a larger population of IDPs.
Dr. Ehsan Kiani