GLOSS Issue 3 ( September / October 2017 ) - Page 48

P R O F I L E Sharmeen Khan Resettling the Indus Text By Ruhie Jamshaid Photos By Nadir Toosy Most of us read about tragedies or unfortunate incidences and feel overwhelmed. However, soon, we move on with our everyday lives, at best perhaps dedicating a donation to the cause. Still, there are a few people, like Sharmeen Khan, who take charge to practically help the devastated and the less fortunate. Then again, Sharmeen Khan is not your run-of-the-mill, usual young lady. On meeting her, the determination and strong-mindedness clearly shine through. “I have been blessed to be from a family which has always supported me. There has never been a demarcation between my brother and I. I was always allowed to be my own person.” Her family was also instrumental in developing the love for social service from a very young age. “I come from a family of doctors. I grew up seeing my mom, Dr Shireen, and the other doctors in my family going out there and providing medical aid to less fortunate regularly through medical camps. Honestly, being a part of one social service project or the other was the norm for me while growing up.” Therefore, in the wake of the 2010 floods in Pakistan, it was impossible for Sharmeen to sit and watch as over 20 million people were affected to debilitating levels. As a young, Beaconhouse National University student in Lahore, she felt the overwhelming need to contribute towards alleviating the tremendous pain millions suffered. “As idealistic as it may sound, yes, I wanted to go out there and contribute towards change.” Along with some of her family members, associates and friends, she found the organization, Resettling the Indus. “It was paramount for us to register an official entity if we were to be able to collect donations for those affected by the floods.” Therefore in October 2010, Resettling the Indus was born. Her Role Sharmeen has a significant role in the organization. She handles the Sindh Chapter and being the only board member located in Karachi, she handles all queries and donors that reach out to her first. She also oversees the Sindh school based in Mirpur Khas and is also involved in its running. Sharmeen’s other role involves the emergency disaster relief. If a tragedy happens, from a terrorist attack to a natural disaster, she and her team will be the first to head down to the ground to gather information and conduct needs assessments. Her team consists of individuals and board members who volunteer for the cause. Sharmeen emphasizes how teamwork is so critical at this stage. “This information is shared through our network of aid organization to help divide the limited resources effectively.” After the assessments, Sharmeen and her team are involved in putting together 48