Airwaves aid flood victims

Voices, UNESCO Asia-Pacific newsletter

Naureen, a teacher in the flood-affected village of Sawan Pur, Pakistan, is a character in UNESCO’s radio drama series Umeed e Sehr (Dawn of Hope).

Broadcast to millions over the national airwaves in Pakistan, the series aimed to educate people about rebuilding their lives after the devastating floods of 2010 which killed almost 2,000 people and directly affected another 20 million.

Naureen is fictional but her message is very real. She persuades families to evacuate their houses, look after the elderly and take shelter in safer places. Issues developed in each episode include learning and teaching in disaster scenarios, epidemic control, and first aid. Special attention is given to women, the sick and the elderly. One character says it all: “We know we don’t have resources, we don’t even have food to eat, but at least we can pool our remaining resources to help those who are sick and vulnerable.”

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