During the floods of 2022, the Cheil and Beshigram valleys (Swat district) were greatly impacted. WWF’s field visits, along with the local community based organizations, revealed that the extent of the damage was far more than what was predicted or prepared for.

1,500 acres of agricultural land was washed away and over 350 households were affected. Critical community infrastructure was also affected, including two primary schools, the primary road network of Cheil-Beshigram, and four small bridges that connected villages to the main road.

The entire village of Badaly was destroyed.

A total of 25 hatcheries were destroyed; a significant loss for an area known for its trout fisheries. Seven irrigation channels and 10 water channels were also washed away, while nearly half of the trees lining the Beshigram river disappeared.

In November 2022, with the help of a grant from WWF-UK, WWF-Japan, and WWF-Netherlands, WWF-Pakistan began working on restoring the ecological balance in affected areas, in close collaboration with government departments and local communities.

© WWF-Pakistan

This work has included:

- Stabilizing 3,000 cubic feet of eroded slope through bioengineering and 2,000 cubic feet through loose stone check dams. 

- Construction of a flood protection spur of 2,000 cubic feet.

- Repairing a damaged water channel of 1,000 meters, to provide water for irrigation and drinking purposes. 

- Replanting 10 hectares of degraded forest land. 

- Restoring two water supply schemes.

To directly support the local community, WWF provided them with 800 fruit and fast-growing tree species and 45 kg of fodder seeds and supported 100 households in kitchen gardening and an additional 30 households by providing them with fuel-efficient stoves. Further, honey bee boxes were also distributed to provide community members with an alternate source of income. 

Through these collective efforts, WWF is helping restore the ecosystem, as well as improve the lives and livelihood of the flood-affected communities in the Cheil Beshigram, Swat.