Canada extends dollar matching for Pakistan

This past Sunday, September 12, 2010, the Canadian federal government announced it will continue its program of matching dollar for dollar donations made towards relief in Pakistan. The initial deadline, slated for that Sunday, is now Sunday, October 3. Government House Leader John Baird who made the announcement said that the government hoped the extension would encourage more Canadians to donate. The matching program is in addition to $33-million Ottawa already committed to relief efforts.

Several sources, the government and various charities themselves have reported that donations have been slow, much slower that the response to the earthquake in Haiti. While summer and religious holidays have been cited as possible reasons; there is also an apprehension that donations may not be making their way into Pakistan to those in need. Kevin McCort, the president of Care Canada, having visited Pakistan just a onth ago, talked about the medical centres Care Canada has already set up. He explained the growing need for medical supplies to hopefully head off an epidemic of water-borne diseases and how his organisation is need of further donations to support their relief programs in Pakistan.

The number of people affected by the floods, as reported by Oxfam, now stands at 21 million, with 10 million of those displaced from their homes and eight million in need of immediate assistance. Oxfam has also reported that the flow of funds to Pakistan from outside donors is failing to keep up with the needs.

Deadline: Sunday, October 3, 2010

For every dollar we donate specifically for relief in Pakistan, the Canadian federal government will match it. That is, if I donate one dollar, Pakistan will get two. Consider being generous. Let’s not forget that we live in Canada, one of the wealthiest nations on the planet. We are lucky; we are all very lucky for one simple reason: we live in Canada. Let’s not forget that some of our neighbours do not have it as good as we do.

Click HERE to read more columns by William Belle


Government of Canada Extends Deadline for Contributions to the Pakistan Flood Relief Fund
Oxfam: Pakistan floods: FAQs
My blog: I’m lucky to be Canadian


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