A Saudi-based relief organization is nearly halfway finished with the construction of 4,000 prefabricated houses for the victims of the October 2005 earthquake in Pakistan.
The Saudi Public Assistance for Pakistan Earthquake Victims (SPAPEV) has built 1,800 of 4,000 houses in Balakot, North-West Frontier Province. A $16.7 million contract was signed to construct the houses in October 2006.
SPAPEV is supervised by Minister of Interior Prince Nayef bin Abdulaziz. It operates under the directives of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz.
In addition to the houses, SPAPEV plans to construct 30 secondary schools in the Bagh and Balakot areas as well as 30 large mosques and 90 small mosques.
Since SPAPEV began its operations in Pakistan, the organization has provided significant relief aid, including 200,000 blankets, 150,000 quilts, 12,500 winterized tents, medicine, stoves, sugar, cooking oil, rice, flour bags, etc., and thousands of polypropylene sheets.
It has provided $2 million each to UNICEF and the World Food Program (WFP), and $700,000 to the READ Foundation. It has also handed over relief aid worth millions to international organizations such as the International Islamic Relief Organization.
After the deadly 2005 earthquake devastated regions of Pakistan, Saudi Arabia was the single largest donor to relief efforts with aid in excess of $573 million.