Angelina Jolie Visits Pakistani Flood Refugees
Angelina Jolie‘s passion for humanitarian work is no secret. Even while appearing in summer blockbusters like Salt, her dedication to philanthropy is unmistakable. Now, Jolie is again taking advantage of her celebrity to bring much-needed attention to a major international disaster in Pakistan.
The flood in Pakistan, which began in late July after heavy monsoon rains, has quickly emerged as a crisis of enormous proportions. Casualties are already reported to be over two thousand, with over a million homes reported destroyed, and $43 billion in infrastructural damage. Even now, at least 21 million refugees remain homeless or injured. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon has called the disaster the worst he has ever seen, emphasizing that relief efforts will likely need to go on for years before full recovery is possible.
Jolie, 36, has already donated $100,000 to the cause, exceeding even the amount given by Pakistan’s President Asif Ali Zardari. Jolie has been a goodwill ambassador for the UN refugee agency since 2001. According to a UN press release, Jolie will visit affected communities as well as relief organizations this Tuesday and Wednesday, helping to highlight the dire situation there.
In a video message released by the UNHCR, Jolie emphasizes that "this is not just a humanitarian crisis, it is an economic and social catastrophe." She has urged others to assist in efforts, telling reporters: "From what I understand, the situation is on a scale we have not really seen. It’s on a huge scale." The UN is still millions of dollars away from reaching its target of $460 million.
For more information on how you can help, visit unrefugees.org/flood. –AMY LEE
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