Technology experts from charity Telecoms Sans Frontieres are providing emergency telecoms services to the victims of the flooding in Pakistan.
TSF, which has been in Pakistan since 9 August, said it has been providing telecoms services to victims of the flooding to allow them to call relatives and friends abroad. Around 945 families have been provided with calls so far, according to TSF. “For many people, the call provided by TSF is the first call since the outbreak of the disaster,” the organization said. “Many victims have lost their mobile phone or are in places with no electricity to recharge or simply have no money to buy credit.”
According to UN officials, the Pakistan floods cover an area the size of England with up to 20 million people affected. At least 1,600 people have been killed, with health officials warning the toll could rise as water-borne diseases spread, TSF reported.
TSF said it has 8 mobile teams, equipped with satellite and GSM phones, in the districts of Peshawar, Nowshera and Charsadda and plan to operate in the country for at least a month. The teams are composed of one man and one woman to allow both men and women to make a call, TSF said.
TSF staff also provides support to OCHA/UNDAC and the other UN agencies in the inter-agency office in Multan, Punjab Province. This assignment is scheduled until staff from the Emergency Telecommunications Cluster and other OCHA partners (IHP) take over. TSF continues to coordinate with the Emergency Telecommunications Cluster (ETC) as per further needs for ICT support to aid agencies.
Telecoms Sans Frontieres (TSF) deployed to Haiti in January to respond the impact of the earthquake in the country. The charity specialises in setting up communications infrastructure to allow aid-agencies to communicate on the ground more effectively.
( Sources: eweek europe, TSF )