The situation in Gaza is unbearable for many. It has been described as an “open-air prison”, and things have been getting even worse amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Gaza Strip is one of the most densely populated places on Earth. It has a population of approximately 2.1 million people, and since 2007 it has been under a land, sea and air blockade imposed by Israel.
Years of conflict and the blockade have left 80% of the population dependent on humanitarian assistance to survive.
Some 95% of the population have no access to clean water, and an ongoing power shortage impacts upon essential services like health, water and sanitation.
Almost half of Gazans do not have enough food, around 60% of children are anaemic and many children have their growth stunted due to malnutrition.
More than 15,000 homes were damaged or destroyed by bombing earlier this year, leaving thousands of young people traumatised and homeless.
We demand that the crossings into Gaza are opened and construction material allowed in so families can begin rebuilding their lives and to have hope for their future.
“In the recent bombing of Gaza, I had to flee our house. My children and I were shivering from fear. We live on the roof, in a house consisting of 2 small rooms, the ceiling is made of metal sheets”, says Heba. The death of her husband left her with sole responsibility for supporting her two children.
“Thanks to Allah, we were able to run away from the house. When the bombing stopped, we went back to the house, I found the metal sheets had fallen from the intensity of the bombing. At that point I couldn’t stand on my feet, I just sat on the ground.
“I know if we had been at home, we would have lost our lives. The worst feeling is that you don’t feel safe in your home because of the bombing, and we know that our house is not able to protect us.
“Frankly, I always pray to Allah that war never happens again. My wish is that my children and I live in safety without fear.
“My house needs to be fixed and completed, as the rest of the rooms in the house lack tiles, a roof and windows, as well as the kitchen and the bathroom.
“I cannot complete the construction of my house on my own. I have been taking care of my children for 8 years after my husband’s death, and unfortunately, I do not have a job.
“The metal sheets cause extreme heat and this has affected my health. I suffer from allergies, and with the intense heat I get fevers and headaches.
“I hope in the future that my children will become educated, I will continue to take care of them and meet their needs to help build a good future for them.
“I would like to fulfil the wishes of all my children, but when they ask me when our house will be completed, when will we have a separate room to sleep in, I don’t know how to answer them. This makes me feel helpless.
“I hope to find someone who will support me in achieving my dream and building my house and building the roof. I am tired of insects and rodents. I do not sleep at night for fear that one of my children may get hurt”, says Heba.
Thousands like Heba have been left without homeless, with little hope for the future. Donate now to help them rebuild their lives.