Islamic Relief began its work in Patkin by forming a community organisation made
up of members of the village who identified their main problems and also the solutions
to overcome them.
As part of our support to community organisations in Pakistan, Islamic Relief provides
them with a package of management and financial training. With this knowledge the
community organisation in Patkin has set up a savings system, which has allowed
them to give small loans to members to help with their businesses or farming.
Islamic Relief has helped to set up community organisations in all the communities
we work with ensuring community participation and input thus making our projects
sustainable and appropriate to each village. Without the community organisations
it is unlikely that our projects would be accepted by the community and would thus
have limited long-term benefits.
72-year-old Bibi Naaz is the manager of the female community organisation in the
village of Killi Abdul Samad Totaazi, a remote village in Kharan, Balochistan. Bibi
has partially lost her eye-sight and lives with 16 members of her extended family.
“I have faced some extremely difficult situations in my life, most recently when
we lost our animals and crops in the long drought. By losing these we have been
through the most difficult times of our life,” Bibi said. “Not only that but there
is very little water for drinking and washing and we used to fetch water from far
away areas which was difficult and took a long-time.”
“We were scattered, there was no unity between the residents of Killi. Each of us
was thinking in isolation and was not bothered about other people’s problems. With
the formation of the community organisation we learnt we can find solutions to our
problems and help each other. We also learnt about saving money for worse situations
and for our community development.”
Through the formation of the community organisation the village identified the need
for clean water and also income generating activities as major issues. “The old
well was not covered and was polluted with dirt and sometimes deadly animals like
snakes. That caused a number of diseases among people.” Islamic Relief has been
working with the community, providing them with hand-pumps and also livestock with
which to make milk, butter, yoghurt and wool to sell at market.
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