Doing your part: Afridi and Abbas step up for flood survivors

SKF Pakistan hosts iftar and dinner for survivors in Dadu.


Express August 23, 2011

KARACHI: It was a cloudy Saturday evening and ‘Iftar Dinner with the Stars’ was in full swing at the Karachi Golf Club replete with cricketer Shahid Afridi and hockey player Sohail Abbas. The meal was hosted by the SKF Pakistan to help flood survivors in Dadu.

Both of the decorated sportsmen made selfless donations to SKF Pakistan’s cause. Afridi donated his World Cup cricket bat and T-shirt that saw Pakistan to the semi-finals and Abbas gave up his goal-scoring hockey stick.

“It’s a very noble cause,” said Afridi, “whenever SKF needs me, I will be there. The people hit by floods in the country really need our support.”

SKF Pakistan is a global supplier of products, solutions and services that was founded in 1907. The group’s managing director, Iqbal Hashmi, told the gathering of his group’s efforts. When the earthquake struck in 2005, they sent a truck-load of food and again to Dadu in 2010. “We rescued people via helicopter and are still continuing relief work in rural Sindh.”

When accessing disaster-hit areas, they use boats. “We believe that, when a disaster strikes, it is the sheer determination and strong resilience of the nation that helps us move forward and fight against all odds.” “There were times when I saw people who wanted their loved ones to die so that they could move forward and continue with their lives.”

Hashmi urged people not to forget the people suffering once the situation stops making the front page of the news. “One question that I was constantly asked by the people was ‘Are you going to leave us?’.” With these moving words, Hashmi kicked off ‘Rehabilitation Phase 2011’ for flood survivors by re-building the villages such as Omar Fakir and Allah Bachio by completing 124 houses.

Right now, 125 houses are under construction in the Khushi Mohammad and Pir Mashaique villages.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 23rd,  2011.

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