At Pakistan’s Northern University, Entire Library Destroyed by Floods
September 8, 2010
Pakistan’s floods have left 10 million people without shelter and created one of the worst humanitarian disasters in history. As the water finally begins to recede in some parts of Pakistan, many communities are attempting to return home.
Nowshera, located in Pakistan’s war-torn Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, previously known as the North-West Frontier Province, was one of the areas most affected by the floods, which completely destroyed Northern University’s City Campus – the only University in the district.
The University’s library lost all of its 11,704 books, furniture, shelves, and extremely scarce and valuable computer equipment. Administrators and students are struggling to piece together by memory the research and thesis papers that were all also destroyed. Until now, the flooded roads prevented access, and the students have been shifted to higher ground.
University trustees are pooling resources to try to reopen the library, but the needs of the district are vast, and funds hard to come by – the University was funded by the Education Development Research Trust to provide educational opportunities to young men and women who otherwise lack the resources to attend. After hearing about the destruction, The Asia Foundation’s Books for Asia program, which has donated 5,000 books to the University’s library, quickly assembled 1,000 new textbooks to immediately replace the most-needed resources in the school’s library. Last week, the first box of 500 arrived. The next is expected to arrive in time for the University’s reopening at the end of September.
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