Pakistan was established in 1947 when Great Britain withdrew from India. The Indian subcontinent was then divided into two independent countries, with India as a predominantly Hindu state and Pakistan as a Muslim one. Pakistan borders China to the northeast, Afghanistan to the west, Iran in the southwest and India to the east.
Norwegian Church Aid has extensive experience from long-term development aid and relief work in Pakistan. Since 1981, we have supported the Afghan refugees in Pukhtunkhwa province (KPK) through our Afghanistan office, which was then based in Peshawar. After a powerful earthquake hit Pakistan in 2005, we began a relief operation in which we, among other measures, delivered water to the earthquake victims in KPK province.
In January 2007, we established a country office in Pakistan. Norwegian Church Aid has since worked through local partners within the areas of peace and reconciliation, women's rights, and water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH).
Peace and reconciliation: We support religious leaders and civil society in their work towards peace and reconciliation, as well as promoting inter-religious dialogue between different actors.
Women’s rights: We support our local partners in the work against forced marriage and in favor of women's right to inheritance.
Recovery and rehabilitation: We contribute with clean drinking water and adequate sanitation, as well as support for shelter, household equipment and personal hygiene.
Because of repeated natural disasters in Pakistan, aid has become an important component of our work in the country. In addition to rehabilitation support to earthquake victims in 2005, we supported the flood-affected people of Sindh and Balochistan with clean water and hygiene measures in 2007. In 2009, we contributed with emergency relief in the form of water supply, food, relief items and health services for people who were internally displaced as a result of the conflict in northwestern Pakistan. Our relief and rehabilitation programme was further increased in the provinces of KPK, Punjab, Sindh and Balochistan after powerful floods hit parts of the country in late July 2010.
Norwegian Church Aid's overarching goal in Pakistan is to support development that promotes human dignity for the poor and for vulnerable groups through programmes that create greater participation, equality and protection. The programmes within Peace and reconciliation and Women's rights are established through the mapping of needs in consultation with our partners. Efforts in these areas will be in focus during the period 2011-2015, together with water and sanitation.