"And we need to get back to the difficult work not just of reconstruction and recovery in Gaza, but of actually building Gaza's economy for the long term and developing its institutions under the Palestinian Authority."
Secretary of State John Kerry
Cairo, Egypt, October 2014
Since 2009, USAID has invested more than $400 million in Gaza. In the aftermath of the Gaza 2014 conflict, USAID provided food, water, hygiene kits, tarps, household items, and medical supplies to vulnerable families. In 2015, USAID continued to provide urgent humanitarian support and began to expand activities for Gaza recovery efforts. The U.S. Government works closely with the Palestinian Authority, Government of Israel, and other development partners to address immediate and intermediate humanitarian needs and long-term development needs in Gaza. USAID follows a rigorous vetting mechanism to comply with U.S. policies.
- Address urgent humanitarian needs
- Improve access to essential social services
- Address water and sanitation needs
- Revitalize the private sector
**Humanitarian Assistance: **USAID provides humanitarian assistance to the most vulnerable populations. Interventions include providing critical food assistance to vulnerable families; delivering essential non-food items such as hygiene kits; and supporting therapy programs promoting mental well-being specifically for conflict-affected children. Current activities include:
- Providing food assistance to vulnerable families ($88.3 million; UNWFP).
Health: USAID strengthens the resilience of the Gaza health sector allowing it to respond rapidly and effectively in the event of crisis. Current activities include:
- Training staff, purchasing medical equipment, and providing psychosocial support ($9 million; International Medical Corps).
**Water and Sanitation: **USAID addresses pressing water and sanitation needs by improving access to clean water, reducing water losses, and improving management of water resources. Interventions include repairing existing water and wastewater networks and treatment facilities; upgrading storm water networks; rehabilitating and expanding basic water supply infrastructure and water connection to households; repairing existing water wells and pump stations; and constructing water reservoirs. Current activities include:
- Constructing four new regional water reservoirs, installing associated new booster pump stations, and constructing new supply and distribution pipelines to benefit 300,000 people as initial USAID contribution to larger Gaza
- Sustainable Water Supply Program ($17.6 million; Morganti Group Inc.; Black & Veatch).
- Removing unexploded ordinances and 665,000 tons of rubble to clear the way for projects in the water and sanitation sectors ($10 million; UNDP).
- Increasing Palestinian access to water and sanitation for 246,000 people through small and medium scale community infrastructure projects ($18 million; ANERA).
- Rehabilitating and upgrading water and wastewater networks to improve access to safe drinking water and adequate sanitation for 600,000 people ($11 million; UNICEF). The project also works with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to pilot an innovative project to test solar desalination technology.
- Installing three small-scale integrated grey wastewater treatment and biogas systems and providing workshops on water, energy, food, and wastewater issues. The project also provides 10 scholarships for Master’s in reusable energy topics ($952,000; Arava Institute).
Economic Development: USAID addresses critical early recovery and livelihood needs, and revitalizes the private sector in key economic sectors. Interventions include increasing employment opportunities through short-term employment and training; revitalizing small and medium-scale enterprises; increasing the competitiveness of Gaza businesses by building their capacity and helping them meet market needs; exploring potential opportunities in the energy sector; and exploring upgrading commercial crossing points to ensure the rapid, efficient, and secure transit of goods in and out of Gaza. Current activities include:
- Building the economy by providing technical assistance, capacity building, and other targeted assistance to key sectors (agriculture, aquaculture, information technology, textiles, and furniture) to increase competitiveness and reconnect businesses to regional and international markets. Upgrading 40 wells with solar energy systems for 300 farmers and providing training and internship opportunities ($6 million; Development Alternatives Inc.).
All of these activities are designed to take a holistic approach and complement each other for a sustainable development strategy to promote Gaza’s recovery efforts and resilient societies. Additionally, USAID will continue to provide urgent humanitarian needs to the most vulnerable populations in Gaza. The U.S. Government is committed to supporting Palestinians in Gaza.