Pakistan is struggling with many problems: internal political conflicts, terror and fighting along the border to Afghanistan have destabilized the country. Recorded economic growth does not improve most of the people and unemployment remains very high. Millions of people have to face existential distress due to recurring floods that cause devastating damage. Additionally, Pakistan has a lack of medical care and the possibilities of treating malnutrition are insignificant, even though the need is immense: More than 40 million people in Pakistan are considered to be malnourished.
The projects of Johanniter in Pakistan have been focused since years on building adequate health care especially for women and children, combating malnutrition and disaster risk management. In 2014, we were supporting more than a million people with our projects. In several hospitals and health centers, we have set up so-called stabilization centers in recent years, in which our colleagues examined and treated women and children with signs of malnutrition. Recently, Johanniter focuses the activities on health care for Afghan refugees and residents of communities which are hosting them. Thus, in refugee camps in Nowshera, Haripur and Swabi Districts, pregnant women and mothers with their children are provided and advised during and after birth.
In 2005, a heavy earthquake hit northern Pakistan. Johanniter quickly appeared with its volunteers which treated injured patients and gave support in reconstruction. In order to be better prepared for future disasters, Johanniter trained communities in first aid and disaster preparedness in the areas of Sindh and Punjab, which repeatedly have been affected by floods. So far, there have been only a few voluntary first aid workers in Pakistan, which is one reason for high death tolls after disasters. The participants learned a correct behavior during and after the event of a disaster. Due to the fact that in an emergency every minute counts, Johanniter also supported the establishment of an early warning system and formed community-based Rapid Response Groups.