Update: U.S. Response to Pakistan's Flooding Disaster

Fact Sheet
Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
October 7, 2010

The United States has responded immediately and generously to Pakistan's call for assistance following the tragic and devastating floods that began July 29. Our response has been consistent with our humanitarian values and our deep commitment to Pakistan. Support to Pakistan includes financial assistance and provision of urgently needed supplies and services, drawing on America’s global capabilities and assets.

The United States Government is providing approximately $383 million to assist with relief and recovery efforts, including approximately $333 million to support immediate relief efforts in Pakistan and an additional $50 million that has been allocated for initial recovery efforts to assist with rebuilding communities impacted by the floods.

The U.S. also has provided civilian and military in-kind assistance in the form of halal meals, infrastructure support, and air support to and within Pakistan to transport goods and rescue people at an approximate value of $68 million.* There are currently 26 U.S. military helicopters in Pakistan supporting relief efforts with more offshore on the USS Peleliu. To date, U.S. aircraft have evacuated more than 21,000 people and delivered approximately 15 million pounds of relief supplies. Hundreds of U.S. military and civilian personnel are working around the clock in Islamabad, in flood affected areas, and at Pakistani military bases in support of flood relief operations.

American business and private citizens are also making generous contributions to assist the people of Pakistan.

Latest Developments:

On September 30, the 23rd civilian relief flight delivered 650 rolls of plastic sheeting for the construction of temporary shelters to Multan District, Punjab Province, and to Sukkur and Hyderabad districts, Sindh Province. This flight brings the total amount of reinforced plastic sheeting delivered by the United States Government to 12,113 rolls, sufficient to provide temporary shelter for more than 363,000 people.

On October 3, a U.S. funded flight delivered an additional 84 metric tons of Plumpy’Doz purchased by the World Food Program (WFP). In total the U.S. has transported enough Plumpy’Doz to protect more than 120,000 children from acute malnutrition for a period of 30 days.

With flood waters receding and Pakistan’s aid delivery shifting focus from air to ground transportation, at the request of the Government of Pakistan the U.S. military flew its last C-17 and C-130 flood relief flights on October 3. From the start, U.S. military C-130 and C-17 aircraft made significant contributions to Pakistan’s flood relief. In addition to the delivery of more than 436,000 halal meals during the early days of the disaster, these aircraft and their aircrews worked in close partnership with Pakistan’s military and National Disaster Management Authority to transport more than 5.5 million pounds of much-needed relief supplies to flood victims nationwide. The aircraft were also instrumental in the evacuation of thousands of people from flood-affected regions of Pakistan. U.S. military helicopter relief flights continue to operate from Ghazi Aviation Base near Tarbela and Pano Aqil Air Base near Sukkur, as the U.S. Air Force’s contingency response element at Chaklala Air Base continues to support the nationwide distribution of international aid to flood-affected Pakistanis.

On October, the Pakistani American Diaspora raised over $500,000 through a relief concert in New York. Held at the Standard Hotel, the concert was headlined by Grammy Award winning artist John Legend and attended by Mayor Bloomberg, several celebrities (Gossip Girls, Saturday Night Live, 90210, HBO’s Boardwalk Empire), and key investment/hedge fund professionals.

Selected U.S. Contributions To Date:

  • In total, the U.S. has provided 13 mobile water treatment units that each produce enough clean water for 20,000 people a day; twelve 12,000-liter water bladders for the storage of clean water; 208,750 10-liter water containers; 15 million water purification tablets (sufficient to chlorinate 150 million liters of water); 58 Zodiac inflatable rescue boats; 96 concrete saws and saw blades; 237,005 blankets; and 12,113 rolls of plastic sheeting for the construction of temporary shelters. These relief supplies brought in from USAID warehouses in Dubai, Italy, and the United States are in addition to the supplies purchased locally by partners that are providing assistance to those in need.
  • In September, WFP and partners reached approximately 6.3 million people with over 81,000 metric tons of food. From October 1-4, WFP reached more than 400,000 people with 5,000 metric tons of food. To date, the U.S. has provided more than $137 million to WFP and NGO partners for emergency food assistance, including funding for local food procurement to support early recovery.
  • The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), which the United States is supporting through the State Department, has assisted 1.4 million flood-affected people with shelter and non-food items across Pakistan.

Private Sector Response:

To date, the private sector has donated approximately $10.5 million in contributions to flood relief efforts. Private sector entities that have contributed include: 3M, Abbott, Agility Logistics, Al-Bario Engineering, Alcatel-Lucent Foundation, Amgen, AT&T, Bank of America, BASF, Bayer, Becton Dickinson, BHP Billiton Petroleum, BMO Financial Group, BMW Group, Boeing, BP, Cargill, Caterpillar, Chevron, Cisco, Citi, Coca-Cola, Cummins, Inc, DHL, The Dow Chemical Co., DTAC Thailand, DuPont, DynCorp International, EMC, Environment Consultancies & Options, Equate Petrochemical, Expedia, Inc., ExxonMobil, Feros Sons Laboratories, GE, General Mills, GlaxoSmithKline, Google, James Hardie, Hadayat Sons, Harris Financial Corporation, Honda Motor Co., ICI Pakistan, Infineon Technologies, ITT Corporation, JCB, Johnson & Johnson, JPMorgan Chase, Kabani & Company, KAPCO, Kraft Foods, Levi Strauss, LG Electronics, MDS Foods, Medtronic, Microsoft, MoneyGram International, Monsanto, Motorola, NetSol Technologies, Inc., Novo Nordisk, Orascom Telecom, Pakistan Telecommunication Company LTD., PepsiCo, Pfizer, Primatics Financial, Procter & Gamble, Rogers Communications, Royal Bank of Canada, Royal Dutch Shell, Henry Schein, Inc., Sheraton, Siemens, Silver Star Enterprises, Staples, Inc., Tethyan Copper Company, Toshiba Group, Toyota, Tpad, UPS, Verizon, Visa, Western Union, and Wackenhut Pakistan.

Through several private fundraisers and events, the Pakistan League of the United States (PLUS) has collected $50,000 for the State Department’s Pakistan Relief Fund. Based in New Jersey, the 450 member group is comprised of Pakistani-American small business owners.

People in Pakistan are invited to share information and updates by SMS texting the word FLOODS to 7111. People using the country’s active Humari Awaz (“Our Voice”) cell phone network are able to update each other about the latest flood news, valuable NGO grant and business opportunities and to make new announcements of support by SMS texting the word FLOODS to 7111. The Humari Awaz social network was launched by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at Government College Lahore during her visit to Pakistan in October 2009. Since the launch, the network’s subscribers collectively have sent over 350 million messages. To learn how to use Humari Awaz mobile users need only SMS the words "HELP" or "MADAD" to 7111.

Public Donation Information:

The most effective way people can assist relief efforts is by making cash contributions to humanitarian organizations that are conducting relief operations. Cash donations allow aid professionals to procure the exact items needed (often in the affected region); reduce the burden on scarce resources (such as transportation routes, staff time, warehouse space, etc); can be transferred very quickly and without transportation costs; support the economy of the disaster-stricken region; and ensure culturally, dietary, and environmentally appropriate assistance.

The Government of Pakistan and the Pakistan cellular phone industry are inviting Pakistanis to contribute to the Prime Minister’s Fund for Flood Relief beginning August 5 by texting the amount of their donation to “1234.” A number of NGOs and companies have announced the establishment of trust funds or donations to the Prime Minister’s Fund.

As Secretary Clinton announced August 18, the U.S. government, through the Department of State, has established the Pakistan Relief Fund for all to join in the tremendous relief, recovery and reconstruction effort. Individuals, corporations, and other organizations can send much needed help to the people of Pakistan by contributing to this fund at 2009-2017.state.gov. In the U.S., individuals can send $10 through mobile phones by texting “FLOOD” to 27722.

Working with mGive, Americans are also contributing to Pakistan flood relief by texting the word “SWAT” to 50555. The text results in a donation of $10 to the UNHCR Pakistan Flood Relief Effort. Every $10 helps provide tents and emergency aid to displaced families.

A list of humanitarian organizations that are accepting cash donations for flood response efforts in Pakistan can be found at www.interaction.org. Information about organizations responding to the humanitarian situation in Pakistan may be available at www.reliefweb.int.

More information can be found at:
USAID: www.usaid.gov/pakistanflooding
The Center for International Disaster Information: www.cidi.org or (703) 276-1914

*The in-kind figure is not included in the calculation of the current USG total. It is an estimate of costs to date. The amount will be adjusted as additional information becomes available.

PRN: 2010/1438