Islamabad: Victims of the 2005 earthquake were commemorated and U.S. government relief and reconstruction efforts were highlighted today in a photo exhibition inaugurated by U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission Ambassador Richard Hoagland and Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani at the Pakistan National Council of the Arts.
The exhibition, Rebuilding Together: With Dignity and hope, was organized jointly by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and Pakistan’s Earthquake Reconstruction and Rehabilitation Authority (ERRA).
“Six years later, that day still lives on in our memories, and in the images we are surrounded by at this exhibition,” said Ambassador Hoagland. “I’m proud that the United States of America has worked with the Government of Pakistan and so many other international partners in responding to this humanitarian crisis.” The exhibition includes photographs and children’s drawings both of the tragedy and subsequent reconstruction.
The U.S. government has been at the forefront of relief and reconstruction since the massive earthquake struck northern Pakistan in October 2005. Along with other donors, the United States provided medical relief and social support to 2.6 million survivors and helped them return to their communities.
U.S. assistance included $200 million in education and healthcare programs and programs to restore livelihoods shattered by the earthquake. The centrepiece of this assistance has been USAID’s $120 million Pakistan Earthquake Reconstruction and Recovery Program.
This program has rebuilt 40 schools and 15 health facilities in Bagh District of Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Mansehra District of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province. All buildings meet internationally recognized standards for earthquake-prone areas and provide access for the disabled.
This assistance is part of the United States long-term commitment to increase the self-sufficiency of the country’s communities, organizations, and institutions.
For more information, contact:
Public Affairs Section
Embassy of the United States of America
Diplomatic Enclave, Ramna 5
Tel: +9251-208 0000
Fax: +9251-227 8607