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Pakistan: Finding hope in despair

05 Oct 2010

Talan and family80-year-old Syed Talan Muhammad (pictured, centre) was paralysed long before the floods affected his village and destroyed his home.

He lives in a village called Naway Kalay and has four sons and one daughter. At the moment, he lives with one of his sons who earns so little as a labourer, he can't support his own family. 

When the flood hit, Talan was unable to leave his house so other villagers took him to a safer place in a wheel barrow.

Deteriorating health, no food, no water

Talan is a heavy man and two people need to pick him up to take him to the toilet. When his sons are at work, his wife helps him move around the house. She is weak herself and it gets really tiring for her.

The couple's health is deteriorating day by day. Talan is in grave need of a wheelchair that will make life easier for him and his family.

The flood has left their house badly damaged. Only two rooms can still be lived in and have to house the entire family. 

There isn't enough food for the whole family. The hygiene conditions in the area are bad and there is no supply of clean drinking water. 

Talan lost everything, but is still hopeful

Although the family lost everything to the floodwaters, Talan is still hopeful that his sons will manage to get back on their feet and start earning for the family. He is thankful that his family and children are safe.

"I am hopeful and confident that our current condition will improve as my sons can do something for us."

Talan and his wife have not been able to visit the medical camps to receive medical care for themselves. It is difficult for them to stand in the queues to get aid. He appreciated the fact that HelpAge team visited them at their house to help them.

They received winter kits containing a blanket, hat and shawl. Talan said: "I was worried but now I am satisfied that we are prepared for the upcoming winter season. It would have been difficult to get these necessities, considering our current financial situation."

Read more about our work in Pakistan

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Asma Akbar

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These blogs are personal reflections and do not necessarily reflect the views of HelpAge International.