We then return to Nagwa where we began our distributions in the dark on Monday. The water is still more than ankle deep on the entrance road, but it has lowered significantly. Some areas of this community are now free of water. There is mud and rubbish everywhere. Many of the doors to the houses remain closed. Pigs are nosing through the mud and buffalo wallow in other parts. The smell is so intense. No services have yet been restored.
As the word spreads that we are distributing food, children come for food to take back to their families. We give 5, 8, up to 10 packets to feed the extended families of these children. The local team know many of these children and confirm with each before supplying the meals to ensure that the available meals can assist the most number of people.
One sight that still remains with me is an old, frail man with a stick standing silently on the muddy road at the entrance to his home. I looked in the doorway as we passed. There were steps leading down to his home that had been completely submerged. It was dark, and I could dimly see that the muddy water had not yet fully drained, but what had been revealed was covered in silt and filth. This is what remains of the life he is now to rebuild.
The other thing that struck me deeply is a parting comment from Asmita’s Sister Uttama as we left. “Be sure to wash and clean your legs and hands well. There is much disease here”. Yes, we can go home and do this. What about those who are living in these conditions, where fresh water must still be carried from the government tanks on the outskirts of the floodwaters?