UK aid agencies help hundreds of thousands in Gaza

News and Press Release
Originally published

The UK’s major aid agencies are ramping-up a huge humanitarian relief effort in Gaza, taking advantage of the current ceasefire to help hundreds of thousands of desperate people.

Agencies are supplying clean water, food, household items, emergency shelter and medical supplies, and helping children and other vulnerable people to cope with the psychological effects of the conflict.

The rapid scale-up of the aid effort comes as the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) today [Friday] launched its Gaza Crisis Appeal, with TV ads screening this evening on ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5, Sky and the BBC, as well as BBC and commercial radio stations.

The funds are urgently needed: the entire population of Gaza is without adequate access to medical care and around 1.4 million people have no or very limited access to water and sanitation. Over the last month hundreds and thousands of people have been forced to flee and 65,000 people have had their homes destroyed or damaged beyond repair.

DEC Chief Executive Saleh Saeed said:

“This is a vital moment for Gaza. There is a major humanitarian crisis and the need in Gaza is huge. Hundreds of thousands of people have left their homes, and whilst many are now returning the situation they are returning to is very grave. They have limited access to even the most basic human needs including food and water. The healthcare system is on the verge of collapse.

“That’s why the DEC has launched its Gaza Crisis Appeal – our member agencies urgently need money to deliver vital aid to the people of Gaza. As the ceasefire continues to hold we’re seeing the UK’s major aid agencies rapidly scale-up their work. They are already trucking water, providing food and supplying hospitals with medicines. We’re relying on the generosity of the British people to help them continue this life-saving work. Please give generously.”

To make a donation to the DEC Gaza Crisis Appeal visit http://www.dec.org.uk, call the 24 hour hotline on 0370 60 60 900, donate over the counter at any high street bank or post office, or send a cheque. You can also donate £5 by texting the word SUPPORT to 70000.

What your money will buy:

· £25 can buy 150 bandages

· £50 can feed five families for a day

· £100 can provide an emergency shelter kit and blankets for one family

Aid delivered so far includes:

· Oxfam is delivering safe water to up to 175,000 people per day.

· CAFOD partners are reaching 99,000 people with water, sanitation and hygiene kits.

· Christian Aid partners are reaching 20,000 people with clean water and have provided 2,400 people with food and hygiene kits.

· Islamic Relief is helping over 125,000 people by providing water and sanitation, food and child welfare.

· World Vision is helping over 10,000 people with medical supplies, food kits and psychosocial support for children.

· British Red Cross partners are supporting emergency medical services and have already reached 3,900 injured people.

· Plan UK is providing child protection and psychosocial support to 4,844 children who have fled their homes.

· Care International have provided emergency healthcare to 3,000 people in Gaza.

· Age International has provided home care to 1,400 households.

· Save the Children are delivering safe water to 4,000 people a day as well as providing baby and food kits and psychological care to children.

The DEC appeal is supported by all major broadcasters; BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Sky and Channel Five.

Stay up to date with developments in Gaza, the emergency response and the fundraising efforts with the DEC on twitter: http://twitter.com/decappeal or on Facebook via http://www.facebook.com/DisastersEmergencyCommittee

Notes to editors:

  • The DEC brings 13 leading UK aid charities together in times of crisis: ActionAid UK, Age International, British Red Cross, CAFOD, Care International, Christian Aid, Concern Worldwide, Islamic Relief, Oxfam, Plan UK, Save the Children, Tearfund and World Vision; all collectively raising money to reach those in need quickly.

  • 11 DEC agencies are currently supporting work or planning to work inside Gaza. Many DEC agencies are working through carefully vetted and monitored partner agencies.

  • To make a postal donation make cheques payable to ‘DEC and mail to ‘PO Box 999, London, EC3A 3AA’.

  • Donations can be made at any high street bank and at Post Office counters.

  • To donate £5 by text send the word SUPPORT to 70000. The full £5 will go to the DEC Gaza Crisis Appeal. Donors must be 16 years or over and have bill payer’s permission. Texts are free and donations will be added to the bill. (Customer service number 0844 800 4884.)