May 7, 2021

Eliminating Hunger

Forty percent of Pakistani households are facing moderate or severe food insecurity in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic, as per a survey conducted by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). There has been much written about the way the pandemic has affected people’s health, mental well-being, and of course finances – which directly contribute to food insecurity within households.

 

On the broader level, the country in itself has also been facing food security issues over the past few years, despite the fact that Pakistan is self-sufficient in major staple foods. Apart from unemployment due to the pandemic, the fact that households in the country are not food secure in a country which produces almost all of its food also means that the problems lie in the mechanisms for distribution as well as the low rate of compensating rural labour. The fact that Pakistan is one of the countries responsible for two-thirds of the world’s under-nourished population should be cause for alarm. While around a quarter of Pakistan’s population lives below the poverty line, poverty is the worst in rural areas. The question we need to be asking ourselves is why the areas that produce food the ones most affected by food insecurity. The situation is so poor that almost half of the country’s children under five years of age suffer stunted growth. And all this is set to be exacerbated due to high population growth, growing water stress and climate change in the next two decades. While one must remember that PM Imran Khan used his first speech to highlight the issue of malnutrition, there is little that has been concretely done to address the issue of chronic food insecurity in Pakistan.

 

In the past, the FAO had emphasized the need for cooperation between developing countries from the region in order to improve agricultural outcomes and share experiences of fighting hunger. The need for agricultural collaboration should go together with the agenda of reducing poverty. If the distribution of wealth does not improve, there is little chance of addressing hunger. The region continues to produce distributive inequalities that snatch food from the mouths of urban and rural populations. This will need to change through concentrated effort on an urgent basis.

With a population of over 210 million, Pakistan is the fifth most populous country in the world. With nearly one third of the population subsisting from daily and piece-rate wages, the COVID-19 response has necessitated an urgent and immediate strategy to protect those living in extreme poverty.

With lockdowns in effect and physical distancing measures mandatory, there were concerns about the spread of COVID-19, due to which the large population living under the poverty line such as daily wagers are facing hunger.

The state of hunger in Pakistan is clearly explained above. A large number of people in Pakistan sleep on an empty stomach every night. Based on the above, Fatima Memorial Hospital and NUR Foundation have taken the matter in their own hands and have started to supply food to poverty stricken students and families of NUR Community Outreach Program (NCOP).


Through your donations, we are providing food to poor families who are unable to afford three meals per day. However, due to COVID19, the situation has further worsened and in order for us to continue to serve the poverty stricken masses, your donations and support is requested which will make a huge difference.

Please continue the support and help us in this cause.

Thank you.

May 7, 2021

Clothes for the Poverty Striken

Covid-19 has thus adversely affected almost all hence, making the global actors ponder as what should be done next year to prioritise global health, democracy, trade, human rights and arms control etc. The world stands changed and transformed in a few good ways too, for example, the previously tattered Ozone layer is now repaired due to lesser carbon emission from largely reduced air traffic, and the plummeting industrial and transportation activities. For economists, this transformation will result in poverty but those who love to see a balanced and healthy eco-system, the change is welcome.

Half of the working population saw either job or income losses, with informal and low-skilled workers employed in elementary occupations are facing the strong contraction in employment. As a result, poverty incidence is estimated to have increased in fiscal year 2020 from 4.4pc to 5.4pc, using the international poverty line of $1.90 PPP 2011 per day, with more than two million people falling below this poverty line.

 

Moreover, 40% of households suffered from moderate to severe food insecurity. The situation has further worsened since March 2021 as a result of the pandemic crisis i.e. third wave of COVID19. As the economy has shrunk, the rate of unemployment and poverty has risen. The worst affected are the poorest segment of the population, who are more likely to be wage labourers, peasant farmers, women, and children.

NUR Foundation took an initiative in 1985 and started a program known as NUR Community Outreach Program (NCOP). The purpose was to serve the community in various sectors including, health, education and employment. Additionally, various programs under the aegis of NCOP are working to ameliorate poverty. One such program is NUR Sandooq which not only is providing food to the poor but also focuses on providing clothes. The idea behind it was to make storage facilities for donated clothing in all the elite areas of Lahore and to encourage people to donate apparel items for the underserved community. In execution of the plan, one dedicated room known as Sandooq is placed in Fatima Memorial Hospital, Shadman Lahore. The donors often come and drop off apparel items in the Sandooq and those items are then distributed among the underprivileged people living in the backward areas of Lahore including Malikpur, Nainsukh, Lakhodair and Gajjumata.

There are a total of around 2,300 students currently enrolled at NUR Foundation schools and they all belong to impoverished backgrounds and are unable to afford two basic meals of the day let alone clothing items. Hence, we wish to increase our donor base in the future which would help us in meeting the clothing needs of the children at NUR schools.

Since these children are heavily dependent on our support, therefore we have to keep providing these families with clothes and food. Our valued donors have always supported the cause and we urge you to keep supporting us so that maximum number of families can benefit.

Thank you so much.

May 7, 2021

Food for Patients and Poor Families

Even before the coronavirus pandemic, food security had posed a huge threat to the national security of Pakistan due to socio-economic conditions, natural disasters, terrorism and sectarian violence, among others factors. 

But the threat has become even more pronounced since the pandemic. It now has the potential to further aggravate poverty in the country.

The primary challenge facing the government at the moment is to curb the spread of COVID-19 and minimize its socio-economic impacts.

Full and smart-lockdowns have led to a reduction in incomes and a disruption in food supply and production. Consequently, households across the country are being forced to cut down on the quality and quantity of their food consumption.

The restrictions on movement of goods and people and lockdown are likely to cause adverse impacts on livelihood and food and nutrition security of people if not accompanied by well thought policy measures.

It adds that around 40 to 62 million people (20-30% of Pakistan’s population) are experiencing some form of food insecurity.

However, these are conservative figures. Keeping in mind the scale of the COVID-19 emergency, it is reasonable to conclude there will be a substantial increase in the number of food insecure people in Pakistan in the coming months or years.

 

In this case, the vulnerable and marginalised groups such as women, children, daily-wage laborers, small- and medium-scale businesses, agriculture and other informal sectors will be disproportionately impacted, not only economically but also in terms of human cost i.e., mental trauma.

During the Pandemic (COVID19), Fatima Memorial Hospital played a vital role in treating as many patient as it possibly could. Since the hospital provides various medical facilities and that too to the needy and deserving patients, it requires support from the donors in providing healthcare facilities and food to the patients.

Now that the third wave has hit the country, more and more patients are expected to be admitted in the hospital. The number of patients is increasing as the spread of the virus cannot be stopped. In these times, the nation is looking towards us to support them.

As a result of which, we rely on the donations by our esteemed donors to cater to the nutrition needs of the patients/patient attendants.

Your valuable donation is of utmost importance to Fatima Memorial Hospital, so please continue to donate maximum so that we can provide food to maximum patients at Fatima Memorial Hospital.

Thank you!

 
WARNING: Javascript is currently disabled or is not available in your browser. GlobalGiving makes extensive use of Javascript and will not function properly with Javascript disabled. Please enable Javascript and refresh this page.