September 7, 2010 – CMAT’s Rapid Assessment Team arrived in Karachi, Pakistan late last night, and connected with members from our American affiliate, IMAT early this morning.
The five member team has begun its assesment of the southern part of Sindh Province, and are heading towards the town of Thatta. Thatta is a historic town of 220,000 near Lake Keenjhar, the largest freshwater lake in the country. The town was one of the worst flooded districts of Pakistan. The sea was on high tide when flooded river water reached it, multiplying the damage drastically. By late August, 175,000 people had left their homes and were camping along the sides of the main road under the open sky.
While CMAT is awaiting further instructions from the assessment team, we would like to thank those volunteers who have already indicated their availability for deployment. We are now seeking additional interested and available medical professionals who would like to be considered for probable deployment as a part of a joint CMAT/IMAT Medical project, volunteering in Pakistan.
WE ARE ESPECIALLY CALLING ON THOSE INDIVIDUALS WHO MAY BE AVAILABLE TO DEPART THE END OF THIS WEEK, PREFERABLY ON FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 10 FROM TORONTO.
The organization is also making an emergency appeal for additional donations to help provide medical aid to the people in Pakistan after the worst flooding in living memory has displaced over 20 million to date.
Canadian Medical Assistance Teams (CMAT) is a Canadian-based grassroots disaster relief organization made up of medical professionals and non-medical volunteers who selflessly give their time and resources to assist and provide relief aid to the victims of natural and man-made disasters around the world. CMAT teams have responded to numerous crisis situations including the Southeast Asian Tsunami and earthquake ravaged Kashmir, Pakistan and Haiti.
CMAT has accumulated a database of over one thousand skilled health care professionals from across Canada. All volunteers cover their own travel costs.
As floodwaters move through Sindh Province, additional flooding has occurred in low-lying areas, and the incidence of disease is swiftly increasing. Several Internally Displaced Persons’ (IDP) camps in the region hold more then 50,000 people. Many of these camps have had no medical care to date, and there are estimates of over 15,000 pregnant woman needing prenatal, maternal and newborn care.
Teams of medical volunteers to staff the CMAT Field Clinic are starting to be assembled, and will be placed on standby awaiting guidance from the assessment team.
We have need for the following professionals:
- GP, Family and/or Emergency Physicians (Medical Residents are accepted)
- Nurse Practitioners
- Registered Nurses
- Pharmacists/ pharmacy technicians
- Camp logistics (non-medical)
Though deployment dates are not solidly fixed, for logistical and safety reasons, it is highly recommended that team members travel together to the region, and volunteers selected for the short list will be notified by email. CMAT is currently staffing the following scheduled deployment dates:
- Friday September 10 – Friday September 24 (more staff needed!!)
- Tuesday September 21 – Friday October 8
- Tuesday October 5 – Friday October 22
We will re-assess the need at the end of the third deployment, to determine whether to extend the mission.
Volunteers are required to pay for their own return airfare from their home airport via Toronto to Pakistan (budget approximately $1750 for the Toronto to Karachi leg), and are encouraged to fundraise for donations to offset this cost. Donations can be made in the volunteer’s name through the CMAT website.
Donors will receive a charitable tax receipt for their donation, and volunteers will be reimbursed by donations collected up to the cost of their airfare within 90 days of their departure. Other out-of-country expenses such as food and accommodation will be covered by CMAT.
Please DO NOT respond to this email unless you meet the following criteria:
- Availability on dates listed (departure/ arrival dates are semi-fixed)
- Valid Canadian Passport with at least 6 months left until expiry;
- Meet the required health-care provider skill set;
- Happy to sleep in tents, on the ground, cook and eat as a team, and work in an extremely hot, demanding, challenging, exhausting but extremely rewarding environment.
If you meet these criteria and would like to be placed on our short list please login to your CMAT volunteer profile on our website, assure it is up-to-date listing your credentials, professional / clinical experience, emergency contact information, etc., and send an email of interest to:
with the subject line: “Pakistan Volunteer Inquiry: –YOUR NAME–, –YOUR PROFESSION–”
Please note that due to an extremely high volume of correspondence, we will only be responding to successful candidates.