Working in the south of the country –misery is unbelievable

by Judith Kühl,  2010/08/30

It is highly probable that the humedica mission will be expanded or shifted to the south of the country. And also for our medical team the point of moving to the next mission area is imminent. Judith Kühl will tell you about why our help is so urgently needed in the south of the country in her unfortunately very sad Thoughts from Pakistan.

Wherever I look, everyone is ill. It feels like a nightmare. Walking along the road, being surrounded closely by the people who have set up their makeshift shelters here by the roadside, the smell of illness and disease is thick in the air. Eyes are swollen and inflamed, faces are covered with rashes and pustules, hair and clothes are dirty, their true colours hidden by the dust.

Many children use the strongly polluted water for washing, not a few of them even for drinking. Photo: humedica/Judith Kühl

Next to me there is a girl who smiles at me with a broad grin. Her name is Asma. She has a beautiful face, in particular when she is smiling. But nevertheless I immediately notice her dried out, flaky skin, her streaming eyes and that she suffers from impetigo affecting her right temple.

Behind the wall that lines the road, there flows the muddy river. Children are playing in the river. It is so extremely hot that they enjoy any kind of refreshment. Asma too, jumps into the river. Next to her there is a little shack standing in the water; a wooden beam leads to it from the shore.

This is the toilet used by the numerous people living by the roadside. This water causes serious diseases. It should definitely not be used for bathing. Asma is standing right in the place where all the faeces fall into the river. She is to get out of the water immediately. Our interpreter does not make much effort telling her so. Without being able to act I watch the girl.

Asma scratches her face. Her skin is itching. Suddenly she plunges her head into the dirty water and rinses her eyes with it. I have the urge to shout at her to stop this immediately. Other children are following her example. The adults do not care. They do not even know that this water must not be used by any means.

This also is an explanation for the various inflammations and diseases suffered by them and the children. Only some metres away, the elderly are lying on their sheets almost motionlessly. The heat causes everyone to feel worn-out. These conditions are terrible.

People here do not only need drinking water and medical care immediately, but also information about simple hygiene rules.

humedica will offer direct help to the people living by the roadside in Sukkur as soon as possible.
Our doctors dispose of the necessary drugs, above all for the treatment of eye inflammations, skin rashes and infections.

Dear friends of humedica: please continue supporting our relief efforts.

You can send a text message containing the reference DOC to +49 8 11 90 and contribute a donation of 5 euros, with 4.83 euros of this amount being directly channelled into our project work. Please also donate for the flood victims in Pakistan via our online form, or choose the traditional way of supporting us by transferring your donation to the account below:
      humedica e.V.
      Donation reference "Flood relief Pakistan"
      Account 47 47
      Bank Code 734 500 00
      Sparkasse Kaufbeuren

Thank you very much!

A picture is worth a thousand words: Two Pakistani children and a silent cry for help. Photo: humedica/Judith Kühl

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