Almost two weeks ago now, a cyclone hit the Arabian Sea coast with winds of 170 mph, submerging hundreds of villages and wreaking general devastation in coastal areas of Sindh province. Specifically, the two affected districts within the Pakistani province are Thatta and Badin, located 112 - 312 miles southeast of Karachi, Pakistan's largest city.
The latest figures indicate that at least 300 people are confirmed dead, although there are estimates of 400 dead and an additional 9,000 missing. In total, nearly 660,000 people have been affected by this cyclone. Over 7,000 families have totally lost their homes and 29 relief camps have been set up and are currently sheltering more than 18,000 people.
Adding to the devastating situation, more than 10,000 head of cattle have been lost and all previously standing crops, in addition to all stored food and grain supplies were washed away with the cyclone.
Catholic Relief Services' Response
Today, Catholic Relief Services supplied nearly 65 metric tons of vegetable oil and 12 metric tons of lentils to Caritas Hyderabad. These supplies will be part of food baskets that are currently being distributed to over 2,500 families in 37 villages.
Additional items the food baskets consist of the following:
Catholic Relief Services staff have traveled to Hyderabad and Karachi to help Caritas Hyderabad with the distributions. Additional efforts include agency coordination with Caritas Germany, who helped purchase remaining items for the food baskets.