"Story of Bakhat Zaman, a fruit seller whose home and fruit cart was washed away by cruel flood water, is extremely grateful to FRD for providing permanent shelter to them which helped in reviving his livelihood source and enabled his family to cope up with the freezing cold in winter as well as scorching heat in summer."
Heavy rainfall in 2010 caused significant infrastructure devastation in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Charsadsa and Nowshehra were the most affected areas where thousands of people lost their homes. Those people who had some resources re-built their houses or got assistance from humanitarian organizations in re-building of their houses. The most unfortunate and least resourceful people neither had resources nor had a piece of land where they could resettle, so they still continue to reside in the spontaneous camps which were established immediately after the monsoon floods of 2010. Bakht Zaman was amongst these people. He was a fruit seller who earned 400rs daily on the average. he lived near the bypass road before floods, having 4 sons and 1 daughter who were all studying in school.
“Cruel waves of flood water washed away our home and all our belongings. I remember when I carried my two young children on my shoulders and was running to save their lives. It was unforgettable experience, all people were running to save their own life but I was just worried for my children. I was not bothered about myself, I was running bare feet which were badly hurt. My feet were bleeding and I was in pain but the pain of loss was more than that. My home and my earning source(fruit cart along with the fruits was washed away by the flood water. All the good memories linked with my home and my cart flashed back in front of my eyes. Tears were floating in my eyes and with broken heart I moved further leaving my home far behind. We took refuge in a hospital. After 4 days of flood I once again went to my home side in hope to find something left but there was nothing” Uttered Bkhat Zaman while sharing his story
Bakht Zaman spent 2 months in a grave yard (mukbura) then he shifted to a spontaneous camp and stayed there for 1 year. Their hopes were fading away with each passing day as they hoped that someone will come to help them out of their miseries but an year and a half went by and there was no one to help them.
Then one day FRD team visited the camp and noted the names of the families living in the camp. The people were not optimistic as there had been visits from other organizations as well but nothing was done to cater their needs. FRD in partnership of UNHCR constructed shelter for these affected families and thus a shelter for the family of Bakht Zaman was also constructed and within 2 months they shifted to their own home in Majoky, MC4.
“People usually take off visibility boards on shelters but I will never do it. It will always remind me FRD’s greatness that how they helped us in hard time” said by Bakht Zaman
Bakhat zaman is now living a satisfied life. His family is now secure from the harshness of the weather, In winter and rainy seasons, it was very difficult for these families to cope up with the freezing cold weather as the tents were unable to provide the necessary insulation against the chilling cold, additionally the tents have suffered wear and tear and were leaked during the rainy season. Their beddings and clothes used to get soaked with rain water which turns to be not usable for many days and nights. The provision of permanent shelter to these families not only provide security and protection to these families but also enabled them to cope up with the freezing cold in winter as well as scorching heat in summer.
“While remembering our experience in camp during rains and storms we pray to God to save even our enemies from it. We know how painful it was when our children were sleeping on wet blankets and beds. Now we don’t have to bother about the rain or storm as we have our own permanent home for which we are thankful to FRD”.
Bakhat Zaman is now working in farm and earning 200rs daily. As the tension of being homeless is reduced so he is able to bring back his life to normalcy by focusing on the livelihoods. Thus provision of permanent shelter not only provided them with a sound and long term solution for their housing needs but also helped in the revival of their income generating activities without being bothered about the basic need of shelter.
Bakhat Zaman was so excited and emotional about his home he stated
“FRD is so great they helped us like angels. Now Even if we don’t have anything to eat but at least have our own home I can say it proudly that FRD believes in equality and justice, who reached to the most deserving people. FRD is best."