- Children in World Vision programmes are being killed and injured in Gaza
- Aid organisation says it’s struggling to reach children in need while conflict continues
- World Vision and 56 other international organisations calling for a lasting ceasefire and a durable and just peace
The alarming toll this conflict is taking on children, and the millions of people around the world calling for a ceasefire, should be a sign to leaders to do more to stop the violence, says World Vision.
So far, over 1000 people have been killed in Gaza, including more than 230 children. More than 6,000 Palestinians have been injured.
“All of the children in our north Gaza programme have been driven from their homes and several killed or injured,” Says Alex Snary, National Director of World Vision’s work in Jerusalem, West Bank and Gaza.
Schools, hospitals, water infrastructure, and homes have been completely destroyed. UN schools providing emergency shelter are overflowing, sewage is flooding streets, children and families are in desperate need of food, water, a safe place to sleep. Health facilities and emergency rooms are in crisis over the lack of fuel and medical supplies.
In Israel, indiscriminate rocket fire from Gaza continues to endanger the lives of Israeli civilians, and children are living under the fear of rocket attacks.
“The violence has to stop now. Children are paying the price for adults’ mistakes. We can’t reach the thousands of children we know need help. There needs to be an immediate and lasting ceasefire so that we can attend to the humanitarian crisis on the ground,” adds Snary.
World Vision has joined 56 agencies to call for public support for a ceasefire in a campaign that reached more than seven million people. This is the first campaign of its kind in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
But while the fighting continues, World Vision is exerting all its efforts to reach out to children in their neighbourhoods and in the hospitals to provide the much needed psychological first aid and psychosocial counselling especially for those who are injured, lost a family member or left their homes due to the continued bombardment.
All parties must work to address the root causes and reach a ceasefire that lasts, says Snary.
“The blockade on Gaza must be lifted. We cannot return to the status quo. The crossings to Gaza must be open, in accordance with international humanitarian law, so that aid and recovery efforts can start.”
World Vision calls on both parties to fulfil their responsibility of protecting children and civilians.