Our Stories

  • Apr 21, 2018

    Coping with poverty and marginalisation has been a way of life for residents in the remote town of Bagan Baba, in Jaffarabad district, Balochistan province. For seven-year-old Shama, a resident of Bagan Baba, she spent most of her days helping her family with household chores. With a multi-dimensional poverty headcount of 75 percent in the Jaffarabad district of Balochistan province, Shama is amongst the fortunate few young girls who are supported by their families to attain a formal education.

  • Relief packages help vulnerable families get through the winter
    Apr 4, 2018

    As a child, Zia-ul-Haq (34) contracted polio. In his remote village of Chota Bizote in Orakzai Agency of Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), high quality medical care was difficult to access. Although he survived the terrible disease, Zia’s legs were paralysed. Nevertheless, he was determined not to let his disability come in a way of leading a fulfilling life. He married and soon became a proud father.

  • FATA’s women-headed households
    Apr 4, 2018

    At ten years of age, Rahat Khan has no memory of his home in remote Orakzai Agency, in Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), before it was swept by insecurity. In 2009 when he was only a toddler, the family was forced to leave their village as military operations against non-state actors intensified. They fled their home and settled for two years in Peshawar, the capital of neighbouring Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province. In 2011 they were able to return to their village in Orakzai Agency but tragedy soon struck again. With the region’s fragile health services devastated by the fighting, Rahat’s father died after a short illness. The family was without a male head of the household – a crucial need in FATA’s heavily male-dominated society, where women are often barred from any public dealings.

  • Vulnerable displaced families helped to rebuild homes in FATA
    Apr 4, 2018

    “We are living in abject poverty,” he says plainly. “I am always worried about my grandchildren. I am old and injured. It is very difficult for me to provide for them without asking others for help.” Ashraf’s situation rendered him and his family eligible for assistance from the China South-South Cooperation Assistance Fund for the Recovery Project in FATA and Balochistan. This UNDP-supported initiative provides basic humanitarian assistance to 8,100 vulnerable families that were temporarily displaced by insecurity in FATA as they return to rebuild their homes.

  • Water channel reduces village tensions in Swat
    Feb 15, 2018

    For generations, the people of Manglawar village in Swat district, north-western Pakistan, had relied on agriculture for their income. The land was fertile and it was located only three kilometres from the river, guaranteeing an ample supply of water for the crops using a system of mud channels that brought water to each field. With hard work and dedication, the 7,000 people of Manglawar flourished.

  • A new road brings uncountable benefits for Swat women
    Feb 14, 2018

    In the highly male dominated society of Swat district in Pakistan’s northwest, women’s need for mobility is often underestimated. Nor are their voices heard when they demand their right to access health, education, markets and workplaces. Shakaray village, Swat, was one such village. For many years, the only path connecting it to the nearest road consisted of a muddy 1.8 kilometre stretch of ruts and potholes. It was virtually impassable for vehicles, and difficult even for pedestrians to navigate. This had severe impacts on Shakaray’s women, who found themselves cut off from the outside world.

  • Overcoming disability to build new livelihoods
    Jan 16, 2018

    When Masta Jan was a child, he contracted polio. After recovering from the severe illness, he discovered that he could not walk unaided. Living in Khyber Agency in Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), on the border with Afghanistan, there were few facilities for children living with disabilities. As insecurity swept over FATA causing thousands to flee their homes, his opportunities diminished further. Masta Jan dropped out of formal education and was unable to perform the physical labour that was the only remaining avenue to employment. Instead, it seemed that he would be dependent on his family for the rest of his life.

  • Dec 8, 2017

    On National Voter’s Day, 7 December 2017, Mr. Mamnoon Hussain, the President of Pakistan and Justice Sardar Muhammad Raza Khan, Chief Election Commissioner of Pakistan, Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), with support from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), launched a new tool bringing voters the information they need, when they need, at their fingertips.

  • Oct 20, 2017

    Amina Bibi lives in Siksa, a village in Ghanche, located at the eastern-most tip of Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan. The village appears paradisiacal, surrounded by the snowy peaks of the world’s highest mountains. Yet for the women of Siksa, the rugged terrain was long a challenge they had to face every day as they walked for hours to collect water for the family’s needs.

  • Water treatment plant provides clean irrigation water to Lahore farmers
    Oct 20, 2017

    Whenever Haji Khalil, 48, used to survey his fields, he felt guilty. A farmer from Bhama village, near Pakistan’s second-largest city Lahore, his land was rich and fertile, but his crops were irrigated by water he knew was tainted.

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