by Naser Qadous
Terrace walls are almost as ubiquitous as the olive trees that grow behind them on the arid hills of the West Bank. The crumbling remains of terraces cut by Roman farmers dot the landscape.
Washington, D.C. — As a group of US-based humanitarian and development NGOs, we are deeply concerned by the Trump administration’s decision to stop funding programs that meet the basic needs of Palestinians at a time of acute suffering brought on by years of conflict and isolation.
In the southern suburbs of Beirut, Lebanon lies Burj El Barajneh; the most densely populated Palestinian refugee camp in the city and home to more than 17,000 registered refugees; all living within a mere 1 square kilometer area.
Overcrowding, poor economic conditions, and social and political marginalization have made the community in this camp vulnerable to poor sanitation practices and conditions.
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Two principles stand as cornerstones in the enduring partnership built by Anera and Americares: efficiency and impact. For 25 years, shipments of medical aid and supplies requested by health workers have allowed local organizations to respond to the direct needs of communities deprived of health resources across Lebanon, the West Bank and Gaza.
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Located in the heart of the Old City of Hebron, Yusra, 27, values all the support she receives from family and friends. "We have a wonderful family support system," says Yusra proudly. "When I need help with the kids and my husband is out at work, our families would readily lend a hand. I would do the same with no hesitation if my sister's or sisters-in-law needed help."
Once again, the crisis in the Gaza Strip is generating headlines around the world. Recent protests at the Gaza-Israeli border left thousands of Palestinians in need of medical aid. These Gaza protests, called ‘The Great March of Return,’ were focused on the right of return for Palestinian refugees and their descendants to family lands or homes lost during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War.
by Liz Demarest
Since December 2007 I have visited Gaza nine times. It is April 2018 and I just got back from a trip there. Over the course of 11 years, I have seen this beautiful strip of land deteriorate to the point where it it is hard to imagine how much worse it can be.
by Sean Carroll
Om Ahmed is a role model for the women in her community. Not only is she highly influential, but she’s called the leader by her neighbors.
It’s not hard to see why—this grandmother never stops. Each morning, she slips on her sneakers and her traditional embroidered dress and goes for a walk on the seashore. In the afternoons, she spends time with her grandsons. And in between, she’s leading a women’s initiative to bring health and hygiene to her water-scarce community.
To encourage youth in rural areas of Lebanon to contribute to their communities and address social problems, ANERA is giving teens the chance to take charge.
The aim is to help youth bring their own innovative solutions to life, by providing financial as well as logistical support. These initiatives positively affect youth by sharpening their job and life skills and offering platforms to prove themselves.
A new kidney dialysis unit has been installed at Safad Hospital in Beddawi Palestinian refugee camp.
This marks an achievement in health care services for Palestinian refugees in Lebanon.
In response to this crisis, ANERA is reaching refugees and impoverished host communities through a variety of job skills training courses that boost employability among the most vulnerable segments of the population.
This winter, ANERA Lebanon staff delivered 96,000 pairs of TOMS shoes to Palestinian and Syrian refugee children. See pictures here
by Akram Jawabreh
My childhood was the most beautiful time of my entire life. I used to spend my time playing in the alleys of Arroub refugee camp, my home in the West Bank. Despite the camp’s uncovered sewage canals, poor lighting and dusty, unpaved streets, life was not complicated. My neighbors and I made a playground of the narrow streets and the surrounding vineyards and fields. Back then, we had no worries of what tomorrow would bring. How beautiful and simple was that time, in comparison to what today’s children are forced to endure.
Is there a sight more beautiful than lush fields of green?
But fields need water and in Palestine, water is both the dilemma and the solution. The scarcity of water in the West Bank, particularly, has inspired us at ANERA to think creatively. Why not make use of a non-traditional source of water that just recently became available in Palestine—recycled wastewater?
By Lara Cooper
Editor’s note: The post below was originally published by American Near East Refugee Aid. ANERA serves Palestinian refugees and poor communities in Gaza, the West Bank and Lebanon, and is a partner of Direct Relief. The post appeared on ANERA’s site on July 13, 2017.
Throughout the world, prematurity is the leading cause of death in children under five. About one million babies die from preterm birth complications each year.
Gaza has long suffered from a severe electricity shortage, but this summer it has reached a breaking point. Now the residents of Gaza get only two to three hours of power per day, if they get any at all.
What does that mean?
Combating climate change is a global issue, yet we recently saw that not all countries are on board. Namely, only three: Syria, Nicaragua and the United States.
** “When a door slams, the kids get scared,” said Qarrah. “They think it’s the sound of the airstrikes they used to hear back in Aleppo.”**
Only four months ago, 75-year-old Qarrah fled to Lebanon with her two daughters, Aziza and Fadilah, and 15 grandchildren. “My two daughters are widowed and we have no one to provide for us.”
Now Qarrah and her family live in two tents in Tal Abbas village. Theirs is among the 839 informal tented settlements housing Syrian refugees in Akkar, Lebanon.
In Nahr El Bared camp, a community-based recycling project is better for the environment and for scavengers like Ayman.
Ayman’s typical day starts at 6 A.M. With his wagon in hand, he heads to the waste dumping sites of Nahr El Bared Palestinian refugee camp to search for recyclables. He can count on filling his wagon with recyclables by early afternoon. He’ll stop for a quick lunch with his wife and children, and then head out for a second round. By sunset, his day is done, and he’ll have found a treasure trove of recyclable trash.