Helping to Make Muzaffarabad Beautiful Again

The project is a continuation of the ‘Clean Week’ programme which began last week and which was launched by the Pakistan-administered Kashmir (PaK) government in the capital city of Muzaffarabad together with IOM.

The local water and sanitation department was supported by IOM in the ‘Clean Week’ drive through the provision of four trucks to remove garbage, uniforms for the staff of the Municipal Department, and coordination of the volunteer services of 30 laborers and 10 international workers during the week.

With ‘Clean Week’ a success, a second phase was arranged to beautify the two-kilometre scenic walkway along the Neelum River in the city. Blocked by landslides after recent rains and tremors, the walkway requires several weeks of heavy machinery demolition, followed by additional beautification.

The second phase which began this week, is relying on the volunteer services of hundreds of schoolchildren, local lawyers, and international volunteers. IOM has supplied all the logistical support needed for the clearing and beautification of the site.

During the first five days of the operation, heavy-stone rubble was removed, green belts prepared along the road and the Neelum River bank, a good drainage system devised, and small flowerpots were placed along the way.

“We will also erect park benches and fix garbage bins on the pavement side of the walkway. I did this sort of work after the tsunami in Indonesia, and it’s nice to be here now helping build a better life for the people affected by earthquake,” says Mike from Canada, one of the 10 volunteers from several countries including China and Belgium.