Muzaffarabad: Sardar Masood Khan, President Azad Jammu and Kashmir said that the Pakistan Red Crescent Society AJK Branch has played a pivotal role in strengthening community based self-sufficiency in the backward areas of AJK.
The President made these comments while addressing the handing over ceremony of Community Based Disaster Risk Reduction (CBDRR) Program by the Pakistan Red Crescent Society (PRCS) AJK Branch to the Government of Azad Jammu and Kashmir.
The ceremony was also attended by the Prime Minister AJK Raja Farooq Haider, AJK Minister for Social Welfare Ms. Noreen Arifa, Chairman PRCS National HQ, Chairman PRCS AJK Branch and Country Head Danish Red Cross Mr. Asif Aman.
President AJK who is also the President of PRCS AJK Branch said that the Sarli Sacha CBDRR is a model for all upcoming programs by the PRCS. He said that the people of Sarli Sacha have displayed exemplary unity by helping make this 5 year project a reality. He also congratulated the community leaders of Sarli Sacha, the line departments of AJK, AJK civil defence departments, Danish Red Cross and Australian Red Cross on their successful execution of the CBDRR program.
President Masood Khan acknowledged PRCS role in institutionalizing community based social work and self-sustained development. He said that in the long run these projects will be self-sufficient and shall help empower the local populace in addressing their core civic issues, especially disaster risk mitigation.
The President said that the PRCS AJK has displayed perseverance and accomplished great success over the years since its establishment in 2001. PRCS has been actively engaged in social welfare work especially in the immediate aftermath of the 2005 earthquake, he added.
The CBRDD program, he said, not only focuses on the Disaster Risk Reduction but also on other pertinent matters like awareness on sanitation, sewerage, hygiene, skill development and mother-child welfare and care. This program will directly benefit over 19,000 people of the Sarli Sacha UC spreading over 10 villages.
President AJK was also informed that over 1,700 individuals spread over the 10 villages were given basic first aid training and emergency response teams were constituted at each village and were provided with ‘Search and Rescue’ kits. PRCS also announced 5 fully equipped ambulances to cater to the people of the Line of Control.
As President of the AJK Branch of PRCS, President AJK also administered onto the participants the pledge ‘Give Way to Ambulance, Give Way to Life’, which aims to draw public attention to the right of way of ambulances during times of emergencies.
The President recognizing the achievements of PRCS said that over the years of extensively interacting with numerous international welfare organizations, the performance of PRCS has always been positively acknowledged by their international peers.
The President also thanked the Prime Minister AJK for announcing the proposed increase in the Endowment Fund and land for building the offices of PRCS AJK. The active and constructive participation of government institutions, community members and donors will positively benefit the successful implementation of social welfare programs, said President AJK.