Temporary help is being offered to families who have been displaced by conflict in Kunduz, northern Afghanistan.

Fighting in the province has forced families out of their homes into temporary camps in neighbouring Balkh province.

Authorities recently estimated that 164 families were internally-displaced within Balkh province.

Islamic Relief is responding to the crisis, which is expected to last only a short amount of time.

Staff are responding to the situation in northern Afghanistan.

Staff are responding to the situation in northern Afghanistan.

Three members of staff were deployed to Haji camp in Balkh province to see what aid was needed. They found many people needed food, shelter, clean drinking water, medication, and non-food items such as kitchen appliances, winter blankets and firewood.

Raja Rizwan Ashfaq, country director of Islamic Relief’s office in Afghanistan, said: “Islamic Relief Afghanistan’s management team called an urgent meeting and discussed possible immediate response to the IDP families.

“We found a lot of people, particularly children, were living in poor conditions, with no access to health services, clean water, shelter, food or winter materials.”

Islamic Relief held coordination meetings with other organisations, including the World Health Organisation (WHO), United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), and United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) to decide how best to respond to the needs together.

As a result of the meeting, Islamic Relief Afghanistan has so far provided medication and support to more than 230 people.

Health is a particular challenge in these situations. When IDPs are under open sky during winter, they are at increased risk of illness, and when hundreds of people live together in cramped conditions, their illnesses can spread quickly.

The team is on standby to respond further as the situation develops.