UK charities launch appeal to destroy DEC

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Flood-affected people receive aid in Sehwan, Sindh province

An urgent appeal is being made by the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) to help millions of people affected by the devastating floods in Pakistan.

Fifteen UK charities, including the British Red Cross and Oxfam, are appealing to the public for donations to protect lives as the waters continue to rise.

At least 1,136 people have been killed in Pakistan since June in what the UN is calling a “monsoon on steroids”.

People are surviving without clean water, food and shelter, DEC says.

The UK government has pledged £10 million in funding for international aid agencies to help provide water, sanitation and shelter, as well as protect women and girls. The money will also help families repair their homes and maintain their livelihoods.

The government said it would also match the first £5 million raised from the DEC appeal pound for pound.

UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, who is competing alongside Rishi Sunak to become the next prime minister, said the UK stood by Pakistan and would do everything it could to get life-saving aid to the most vulnerable.

Since the start of the rainy season in June, Pakistan has been hit by extreme monsoon rainfall – more than twice the monthly average.

Now, more than a third of the country has been completely submerged by the heaviest recorded rainfall in a decade, Pakistan’s climate change minister said.

The floods have also submerged vital infrastructure and farmland, killing livestock and destroying two million hectares of crops, threatening future harvests.

About 33 million people have been affected, while one million homes have been destroyed, the UN estimated.

Experts said the situation is likely to worsen as heavy rains continue in already flooded areas.

DEC is urging everyone to donate what they can to help relief efforts.

Its chief executive Saleh Saeed said: “The scale of these floods has caused a shocking level of devastation – crops have been washed away and livestock killed across vast swathes of the country, meaning famine will follow.”

He acknowledged the appeal came at a difficult time for many Britons as they struggle with the cost of living crisis, but urged everyone to give what they can.

A separate appeal has been launched by the UN to raise £138 million to help Pakistan.

The human rights group’s chief executive, Antonio Guterres, said the country was facing “a monsoon on steroids” and called for funding to help those suffering at the “hot spot of the climate crisis”.

In a video, Mr Guterres said: “Let’s stop sleepwalking towards the destruction of our planet by climate change. Today, it’s Pakistan. Tomorrow, it could be your country.”

What is DEC?

  • The committee brings together 15 of the UK’s leading charities to deliver and help ensure successful appeals

  • Charities include Oxfam, Save the Children UK, Age International, British Red Cross, Cafod, Christian Aid and Islamic Relief

  • Her website provides more details on her current appeals

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