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SOS from a widow living in patched tent with 8 children

SOS from a widow living in patched tent with 8 children

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Jan 08, 2017 - 13:56

KHOST CITY (Pajhwok): A widow from southern Khost province, living in a patched tent with her eight children, has sought assistance from the government and humanitarian organisations.

Sherin Gula is living along with her children in Azadi Mena area, on the outskirts of Khost City, in miserable conditions. She has a tattered blanket to wrap her children in.

With no firewood to heat up her tent, Gula said her children stepped out of the makeshift abode early in the morning to bask in the sun. “I cover them all with the single blanket we have.”

She collects paper pieces that are burnt inside the tent. Her son-in-law is also living with his children in another dark corner in similar plight.

The compound owner dies not take rent from them. Gula’s husband and elder son died years ago. Now she is living with her four daughters and as many sons, all of them too small to work.

“My son-in-law is living in that small old room. He repairs sewing machines on streets. He also has an eight-member family to support and cannot help us,” the woman adds.

Gula is faced with lack of food items and other basic necessities. “My children polish shoes in the city, earning 50 to 100 afghanis daily, which cannot meet our needs,”

She is left with no option but to beg and collect flour, oil and firewood from other houses in the neighbourhood. She asked the government and charities for help, but in vain.

Mohammad Zaman Nazari, a civil societyinfo-icon activist, asked well-off people, the government and charities, particularly the Afghan Red Crescent Society (ARCS), to help the poor.

“Wealthy people should help them in this chilly winter; the rich can offer them jobs,” he suggested, saying the under-resourced individuals deserved compassion.

Khost governor’s spokesman, Mubarez Mohammad Zadran, said a survey of the needy people by ARCS and the refugees affairs department was underway.

Once identified, they would be given assistance, he promised. There are hundreds of families like Gula’s in Khost, suffering from abject poverty and official neglect.

mds/mud

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