UK: British Pakistanis raise flood aid through grassroots activism

UK: British Pakistanis raise flood aid through grassroots activism

Via The Guardian:

More than £3,000 has been put into the collection box at Mohammed Asif's Gloucestershire shop. Those proceeds will be spent 4,000 miles away, in the north-western province of Pakistan, where the businessman's extended family has constructed a soup kitchen for hundreds of flood victims.

The aid supply chain linking Asif's Oriental Food Store in Cheltenham to refugees flooding into the Pakistani city of Nushera is one of hundreds of ad-hoc relief efforts that British Pakistanis have begun organising while Pakistan's government struggles to cope with the disaster.

"The support from the Pakistani community to us has been extremely noticeable," said Brendan Paddy of the Disasters Emergency Committee, an umbrella organisation which responds to major disasters overseas. "But there are a significant number organising their own community activity and wiring money to contacts in the country."

The surge in support from British Muslims, who are currently observing the holy month of Ramadan, contrasts with donations to multinational relief charities, which have struggled to raise the sums given after recent disasters elsewhere in the world.