Pakistan: Addressing health needs for resilience and fostering local integration

The 2022 floods in Pakistan caused widespread damage, destroyed over two million homes and affected approximately 15 percent of the country’s population. Following the floods, GNDR member Alight provided access to education and healthcare to the affected community, utilising a recipe that fostered  cohesion among the displaced populations, enabled access to systems and services, and created new partnerships with other CSOs.

  • Foster community cohesion among displaced people
  • Tailor support to access services
  • Partner on service and programme delivery

Seeing the need for access to healthcare for people displaced by the 2022 floods in Pakistan, Alight focused its efforts on renovating three rural health centres and stocking them with necessary medical supplies, while also providing primary and maternal, newborn, and child health services. Though the renovation succeeded in supporting much of the community, Alight found that some people were unable to access the health centres. 

Photo by Shazaf Zafar on Unsplash

To address this gap, Alight reached out to local organisations to find the way to best support housebound patients – such as women and children – and ensure that everyone has access to medical care. They collaborated with local actors to provide psychological support and established temporary learning centres to engage and rehabilitate young children through education and sports. Alight convened representatives of the organisations working in the same area. Together they successfully coordinated the division of tasks among them to minimise duplication and avoid service gaps. For instance, where Alight was delivering health services, another organisation provided water and sanitation services.

“Alight does not solely rely upon the needs assessment reports or situation reports. It engages the displaced and host community members to become a part of the response plan. This approach has benefited the response in multiple ways: enhancing social cohesion, accelerating response time, and innovating cost-effective solutions.”

Tariq Cheema, Alight, Pakistan

While it focuses on meeting the needs of displaced populations, Alight recruited volunteers from both the host community and the displaced community in order to strengthen social dynamics. Alight also employs host community members in emergency response roles to improve community relations.

To amplify the voices of displaced people and raise awareness of available services, Alight mobilised its local volunteers to use social media. It also reached out to the local representatives of national media to inform the population of the local districts and their public representatives.

Recognising that humanitarian aid often takes a one-size-fits-all approach, Alight works with displaced populations to co-create humanitarian responses and provide support from their initial displacement to finding durable solutions. Alight centres its work on those who are displaced and develops trusting local partnerships that build resilience.

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This case study was produced as part of our Making Displacement Safer Cookbook – a resource on addressing DRR challenges faced by displaced communities in urban areas.

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Project funded by

United States Agency for International Development

Our Making Displacement Safer project is made possible by the support of the American People through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) – Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance. Content related to this project on our website was made possible by the support of the USAID. All content is the sole responsibility of GNDR and does not necessarily reflect the views of the USAID.

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