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The Internally Displaced Persons and JEN Staffs Fighting the Heat

Dera Ismail Khan city is situated on the west bank of the Indus River, on the very southern tip of the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province. It shares a border with the Punjav and Balochistan province, and is a geographically important location in the surrounding area.

Dera Ismail Khan has a desert climate, and although its summers are hot, the winter cold is moderate. Rain falls from late winter to early spring (February~April) and also during the monsoon season (June~July). This summer was extremely hot, and the highest temperature thus far as been reported to be 49 degrees Celsius.

[A JEN staff member talking to an internally displaced person]

JEN has been working with the people have been forced to seek refuge in Dera Ismail Khan from the South Waziristan military district between 2008 and 2009. The displaced persons of the village under our assistance this year have been enduring the heat in terrible living conditions

In the Palore district, the refugees, and even the local people of the community that have accepted them, have no access to clean water. Some of the internally displaced persons drink water from irrigation streams or lakes.

Also, the shortage of electricity has been a national problem for Pakistan, but the tents that the refugees live in do not have running electricity. This makes the heat even harder to endure. The small children spend their day playing in a neighboring river, canal, or irrigation ditch. People from the relatively cool Warizistan district is having difficulty adapting to the heat of Dera Ismail Khan, and already, two people have died from abnormally high fevers.

[Children playing in water]

[The children are all wet after playing in the river.]

But in this heat, there are many projects and activities planned including the establishment of a sustenance recovery committee, distribution of goats and training of staff. JEN’s local staff members work in the early morning to avoid the heat, and wrap wet cloth around their heads to minimize damage from direct sunlight. Also, to compensate for the energy and minerals lost through sweat, they drink water with sugar and salt mixed in them.

[JEN staffs having a meeting with the internally displaced persons. They are wrapping wet scarves on their necks and heads (second, third, and fourth from the left)]

We are making efforts to work through our activities in the heat and to try to deliver support as soon as possible.

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July 4, 2013 in Pakistan |