The recent devastating flooding in Pakistan has left millions in need of emergency assistance. In addition to the physical toll left by the worst flooding the country has witnessed in the last 80 years, there is a real urgency of health risks, food shortages, and displaced populations. The Canadian government has already pledged up to $25 million to be provided through the Canadian International Development Agency (“CIDA”) for humanitarian assistance. In addition, a further $8 million will be provided for life-saving assistance and urgently needed equipment by the Global Peace and Security Fund, managed by the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade.

The Canadian government has recently established a Pakistan Floods Relief Fund to be administered by CIDA. Donations by individual Canadians (up to $100,000 and made between August 2 and September 12, 2010) to Canadian registered charities that are earmarked for Pakistan flood relief efforts will be eligible for dollar for dollar matching. To ensure that eligible donations will be taken into account, the participating charities are required to complete and send in the Pakistan Floods Relief Fund Declaration Form to CIDA on or before September 27, indicating the amount of eligible donations received.

The matched funds will not be provided to the charities raising the donation as has been the practice in the past. This time, the funds will be allocated by CIDA to experienced Canadian and international humanitarian and development organizations with the vital in-country capacity to deliver the urgent humanitarian relief required in Pakistan. It is interesting to note, that the government has chosen this route to administer the funds over the route of giving to charities chosen by Canadians which was the route used in the past. Further information on this program is available here.