ACT Alliance Appeal: Humanitarian Response to the Protracted Crisis in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT) - PSE191

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Appeal Target: US$ 684,269

Balance requested: US$ 684,269


A protracted protection crisis continues in the occupied Palestinian Territory (oPt), which remains largely attributable to Israel’s ongoing occupation (UN OCHA 20191).

In Gaza: After years of a relative absence of armed conflict since the 2014 hostilities, there has been a sharp deterioration in the humanitarian, human rights, security and political situation in the Gaza Strip. With the ongoing siege imposed on the Gaza Strip since June 2006, people have a sense of hopelessness and desperation which is eroding coping mechanisms and resilience, while rising violence and tension are driving concerns of a renewed escalation of hostilities.
The health system, on the verge of collapse following years of blockade and de-development, is now overburdened with massive casualties from the ongoing “Great March of Return” demonstrations.

The economy is in ‘free fall’ according to the World Bank, and poverty, unemployment and food insecurity are increasing, as are other core drivers of humanitarian need. Power cuts for most of the day is impeding the delivery of basic services and crippled productive activity (with the delivery of fuel funded by Qatar is temporarily improving the electricity supply). Hospitals, water and sewage treatment facilities, and solid waste collection services are still reliant on UN-coordinated emergency fuel to maintain essential services. The situation has triggered acute levels of psychosocial distress, especially among children and adolescents which also affects the nutritional status of these vulnerable categories. According to UNOCHA 52,000 people including 26,000 children need mental and psychosocial health as a result of Gaza ongoing tension.

In the West Bank: the humanitarian situation in the West Bank is less acute, but economic growth there is slowing down. Palestinians are subject to a complex system of control, including physical (the barrier, checkpoints, roadblocks) and bureaucratic barriers (permits, closure of areas) which restrict their right to freedom of movement. The expansion of settlements, restrictions on access to land and natural resources and ongoing displacement due to demolitions in particular, are ongoing.
Israeli policies curtail the ability of Palestinians in Area C to plan their communities and build homes and infrastructure.

According to UNOCHA, 350,000 people living in 67 communities in the West Bank are vulnerable to settler violence. The Palestinian Authority is unable to access this area to provide vital services (such as education, health, social services and civil policing). Restrictions on construction hamper economic and social development too therefore this area has not had the same opportunity for economic development as other areas of the West Bank. Economic restrictions, demolitions and land confiscations severely affect the social fabric too. Employment opportunities are very limited in areas C. Access to and control over natural resources remains one of the paramount issues facing community livelihoods.

For the first time, the ACT Appeal for the OPT was developed from a lens that understands the differences between Gaza and the West Bank in terms of humanitarian impact and scale of needs, but with a strong recognition of the shared and broader needs of the Palestinian people. The ACT Palestine Forum was organized using the same analysis, and Forum coordination is proactively managed between Jerusalem and Gaza despite the access and mobility issues. This Appeal is an expression of the Forum’s desire to make direct operational links between the two areas and strengthen its existing platform for coordination, learning, and resourcing across the two areas.