October 10, 2005: CMAT has launched an emergency appeal for donations to help the people in northeast Pakistan, Afghanistan and India after a powerful 7.6 magnitude quake struck the area, centered about 100km northeast of Islamabad. Current estimates suggest that up to 30,000 persons have perished to date and over 43,000 injured – numbers will climb.
CMAT will focus its efforts in northern Pakistan in the Muzzaffarabad area. CMAT staff in our Kabul, Afghanistan office will deploy an assessment team to eastern Afghanistan to perform a survey to assess the condition of quake affected persons, destroyed homes, health assessment of women and children, and to document with sketches and photographs. Before the quake, staff in Kabul were implementing an ongoing disability project for Afghans funded by the UNDP.
CMAT has contacted the Pakistan Consul General in Toronto, as well as Pakistan International Airlines/Air Cargo and the Canadian High Commission in Islamabad. We are requesting logistical and funding support to rotate 6-10 member medical relief teams into and out of the area in 2-3 week stints with the assistance of the Pakistan military. CMAT is also investigating whether the renowned Vancouver HUSAR team can be mobilized with CMAT to the area since they have specialized training and equipment for earthquakes. The HUSAR team was recently deployed to New Orleans as part of Hurricane Katrina relief.
CMAT has accumulated a database of over 100 skilled health care professionals and construction/tradespersons across Canada which was generated since the December 26 Indian Ocean Tsunami. All are volunteers with many indicating they would foot their own travel bills.
CMAT will co-fundraise for this cause at our fundraising dinner planned for Sunday, October 16 in Hamilton which is intended to raise funds for 850 Afghan orphans at the two largest orphanages in Afghanistan. Captain Martin Anderson of the Canadian Forces (formerly 2nd in Command of the Kabul-Civil Military Cooperation and President of the Humanitarian Club for Canadian Forces at Camp Julian) will be the keynote speaker.