ISLAMABAD - The Muslim International NGO’s Forum Pakistan (MIF) announced on Friday that they would jointly utilize their funds to distribute food packs among poor families of Balochistan during the holy month of Ramadan.
Addressing a news conference at the National Press Club the MIF Spokesman, Fadlullah Wilmot, flanked by other members of MIF, said that 20,000 people will benefit from these food packs, which would contain enough supplies for one month for a family of 6-8 members. He said that the food packs contain dates, flour, lentils, cooking oil, sugar, tea and milk. “Each year Muslim INGOs distribute food packs individually but this year all Muslim INGOs in Pakistan are uniting to work together to deliver better, and the experience of working together has proven to be successful” he said.
The purpose of this distribution is to increase food security for the most vulnerable households in food deficient areas of Balochistan, added the spokesman.
While highlighting the food security problem in Pakistan, other MIF members said that about one third of the population of the country does not have access to food needed for adequate nutrition and that this is manifested in the widespread incidence of malnutrition. MIF members also said that Policy makers, planners and development agencies must address the issues of food security and malnutrition in children and mothers immediately.
MIF stressed the need to develop policies for sustainable household food security, assessment of nutritional needs, strengthening of food control system and improving preparedness and disasters response. Muslim Aid Country director, Khudada Ahmed said that Pakistan has great potential but suffers from natural and man-made disasters due to which the poor have suffered the most.
“Those living in the rural areas, comprising 60 to 70 per cent of the total population, and who contribute greatly to the economy of the country ironically do not have enough food to eat,” he stated. “MIF aims to support and help build communities, especially those which were affected by calamities like last year’s floods,” said Ahmed, adding that all Muslim donor countries and INGOs have helped their Pakistani brethren in their time of trial and distress.
Ahmad further claimed that in order to address food security, MIF member organizations have supported over 50,000 households in Pakistan with agricultural inputs. They informed that over 20,000 households have already been provided with livestock veterinary and feed support while over 10,000 schools, hospitals, drainages systems, and houses have been constructed for the deserving communities.
Altogether, approximately $ 30 million has been spent by Muslim INGOs under the Pakistan Flood Response Programme.