Progress reported in quake relief; ministry sends another team.

By November 23, 2005

Pakistan (MNN)–Four of five crossing points along the Line of Control are open to help get relief into the areas between Pakistan and India.

While aid groups and supplies can cross, no civilians are being allowed over. The situation speaks to the tensions in the region, and to the cooperation between the states in order to help disaster victims.

It is their continued plight that has hundreds of aid groups committing to long-term assistance. Many of them are partnering for more effective projects.

HCJB World Radio is one such group. The agency just sent its second Quito-based medical team to help SIM International in Pakistan’s quake zone. For security reasons, we can’t reveal names, but we’ll call the team leader “Kara”.

She calls their staff response “encouraging”. “We’ve been inundated with colleagues coming and saying, ‘I want to go. Can I help?’ Our colleagues are taking time out of their work; they’re taking time away from their families, and they just want to be there and share their skills and be able to reach out to the people of Pakistan at this very difficult time for them.’

According to the BBC, the quake’s death toll in Pakistan reached 73,000 by Nov. 16 with another 69,000 injured and an estimated 3 million homeless. Another 1,400 have died in the sector of Kashmir administered by India.

It’s no surprise that with numbers like that, it’s a scramble for aid groups to get relief where it needs to go. Kara says there is a lot of work to do, some of it still dangerous with the onset of winter.

However, she adds that, “I really believe that the safest place on the planet is in the center of God’s will. I believe this is a door that God is opening for us to go through. There are people who have needs and we have the skills to meet some of those needs.”

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