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The catastrophe of floods in Pakistan, 2022

Nearly 33 million people, including approximately 16 million children, have been impacted by the devastating rains, floods, and landslides caused by the heavy monsoon rains in Pakistan this year. As a consequence of big rivers spilling their banks and dams collapsing, many homes, farms, and vital infrastructure, including roads, bridges, schools, hospitals, and public health institutions, have been devastated. At least 18,000 schools and other educational institutions have been damaged or entirely destroyed due to the floods.

Children in areas where one-third of girls and boys were already out of school before the crisis is in danger of having their education interrupted for a second time in many years owing to the school closures of the pandemic. This is the second time in as many years that this has happened. While this is taking place, there have been several instances of people being ill with conditions such as diarrhea and other water-borne illnesses, respiratory infections, and skin disorders.

It is feared that the already catastrophic humanitarian situation will become much direr in the days and weeks ahead as heavy rains continue to fall in already inundated districts. In many of the areas in Pakistan that have been hit the hardest, alarmingly high rates of child malnutrition and limited access to sources of clean water and sanitation already exist. In most affected regions, public health institutions have been completely wiped out or suffered significant damage, and many medical professionals have been forced to flee their homes. There is a significant risk of catching cholera as well as other diseases associated with water.

The effects of natural catastrophes caused by climate change won’t be experienced equally by everyone. Children, particularly those living in the poorest neighborhoods, will be more severely affected than adults.

The consequences are acting like a chained reaction, something that will run lifelong with all the victims. They cannot be encapsulated in a few words nor narrated in their true gruesome details.

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