Several heavy earth tremors shook the west of Afghanistan’s Herat province on Saturday, October 07. According to the Ministry of Disaster Relief in Afghanistan, there have been at least 2,500 fatalities so far. More than 11,000 people are affected by the quake.

Sindajan district, northwest of the provincial capital Herat, was the hardest hit. Many villages are poorly equipped against earthquakes with simple construction, as a result, more than 1,400 houses have collapsed, burying many people under them.

The local government has gone from house to house asking for donations of money and goods (clothes, blankets, medicines, food,…) Many citizens from Herat had already set out to help practically: Rescuing buried people, recovering the dead, digging graves, sometimes with excavators, (sometimes simply digging long trenches for this purpose). We have heard from several sources that some villages have simply collapsed like sand.

A man was in the field with his donkey and went to squat during the earthquake. Then, when he turned around, his village was no more, just a field of rubble. “What should I do now?” he said to himself, “Of my family, only my donkey and I are left!”

Shelter Now has already delivered medicines to the clinic in Herat. Other measures are planned: Distribution of tents, blankets, drinking water and food. We have already transferred 60,000 euros to Afghanistan. Further amounts of money will be needed.

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