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Educational institutes offered as storm shelters in Karachi

KARACHI, June 28(Daily Times): Educational institutions in the city have converted into rain emergency centres to help with the weather situation. Thirty-six government schools acted as shelter homes in 18 towns in the city. Help is also being offered by various private school management associations.

Private schools have offered their unconditional cooperation with the government in sheltering rain victims.

EDO Education (schools) Fakhar Karim Siddiqui said that the schools have been directed to provide shelter to rain victims until further notice. "The heads of 36 public schools were ordered to provide shelter, security and fresh water to all who became shelter-less during the rains. Adequate food and medication would be ensured by the CDGK," she said.

Furthermore, the health department has been directed to provide emergency health care services to rain survivors at the shelters, she informed.

Several private schools offered to provide the survivors with all their available facilities, including shelter. Private School Management Association (PSMA) Chairman Sharaf-uz-Zaman said, "It's our humanitarian duty to support rain survivors. We want to repeat our statement once again on behalf of all the schools under our association: any school building that the government feels is suitable for a shelter camp will be given without any question." All Private Schools Management Association Sindh (APSMAS) Chairman Syed Khalid Shah recommended using private school buildings instead of public school buildings because they are better maintained.

"Public school buildings are generally in a very poor condition because they are not maintained. They may not be able to withstand a disaster like the last windstorm. The government can use our buildings whenever they want," said Khalid Shah.

In addition, the private schools have started offering special prayers for the people that were killed or injured because of the weather. "We have directed all our coordinators in 18 different towns to organize special prayers in the schools. Because summer vacations are in progress, the coordinators have been directed to announce the prayers at a near-by mosque," said Khalid. The prayers were initiated Wednesday and will continue till Friday, he added.
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