We are extremely concerned by the continuing violence in Gaza.
UNICEF welcomes the announcement of a temporary pause in fighting and the return of children to their families. However, we continue to call for a complete and immediate ceasefire and for the killing and maiming of all children to stop.
Hundreds of thousands of children are affected by the violent conflict in Gaza and Israel. An unrelenting bombardment of Gaza followed the brutal attacks in Israel on 7 October. Violence is taking a terrible toll on the lives of children and families.
Homes and critical infrastructure lie in ruin. 22 of Gaza’s 36 hospitals, which are also being used as shelters for displaced people, are no longer functional. Many children and families have also sought shelter in schools.
Supply routes into Gaza are severely impacted, impacting food, water, electricity and medicine access for children and families. More than a million people, nearly half of them children, have been warned to move south, as Israel continues a ground assault into one of the world’s most densely populated areas.
Despite the dangerous situation, we continue to deliver life-saving supplies such as medicine and clean water, as well as mental health support. We have been able to bring some supplies to Gaza through the reopened Rafah Crossing with Egypt – but this meets only a tiny proportion of the need so far, and the temporary pause in hostilities will be insufficient to meet the dire needs in Gaza.
With supplies and living conditions rapidly declining, we need your help to reach more children and families. Please support the Children of Gaza Crisis Appeal.
What is UNICEF’s position?
We are calling for an immediate ceasefire, the establishment of humanitarian corridors to allow safe access, and the immediate and safe release of any child being held hostage. Schools, hospitals and shelters must be protected from attack – in accordance with international humanitarian law. And all children must be safe from harm.
Despite the challenging humanitarian and security situation, we continue to respond to the critical needs of children and families in Gaza. We are working with partners to deliver life-saving supplies, including medicines and clean water, as well as mental health support.
How are you helping children in Israel?
We are calling for the immediate cessation of hostilities, and for all parties to unconditionally protect children from harm no matter who or where they are. We are calling for the immediate and safe release of any children being held hostage in Gaza. Any children in custody of parties to the conflict should be protected, and immediately and unconditionally released.
We are an impartial, non-political humanitarian organisation. While we continue to report on and advocate for the protection of all children in both Gaza and Israel, our humanitarian response is driven by the need. Before this renewed violence, one million children needed humanitarian aid in Gaza and the West Bank. In high-income countries such as Israel, the State usually provides the supplies and services for children that we undertake or supports in lower income countries.
There is a National Committee for UNICEF in Israel – the Israeli Fund for UNICEF – that works to promote and raise awareness of children’s rights in Israel and to raise funds for our work across the world. You can find out more about its work here.
Can humanitarian aid reach children in Gaza?
To take full advantage of the 4 days humanitarian pause, in the last 24 hours we have doubled our supplies procurement from $10 to $20 million.
We are working to move life-saving supplies into Gaza and across the strip wherever logistically possible due to the widescale destruction of the infrastructure and threat posed by Unexploded Ordnances.
We have 180 trucks of supplies ready to enter and are aiming to convey 30 trucks per day, focusing on the provision of water, sanitation, medical supplies and hygiene kits. For example, on water, 10 trucks are expected to cross every day, each with 33,000 liters of water. In addition, UNICEF will convey 50,000 sanitary pads (pack of 7), more than 26,000 10L collapsible water containers and six 10,000L collapsible tanks, among other critical items for children. We will also use this 4 day humanitarian pause to repair/strengthen existing WASH and health systems.
In addition, UNICEF is procuring and will deliver blankets, tents and warm clothes for all age groups to prepare for the winter which is posing a risk to those who live in overcrowded shelters and in inadequate housing conditions, especially children. 1.6 million people are estimated to be displaced, 50% of them are children.
Can I donate by phone?
If you’re in the UK and would prefer to make a donation by phone, you can call our dedicated donation line: 0300 330 5699.
Can I donate by cheque?
You can send in your cheque, made payable to UNICEF UK, to the Donations Team, UNICEF UK, 1 Westfield Avenue, Stratford, London E20 1HZ. Please include a covering letter with your name and address details.
You can help us reach more children affected by the crisis. Please donate today and help us protect children in Gaza and the wider State of Palestine.
For the first 6 months, monthly donations made to this appeal will go towards funding our work to support children in Gaza and the wider State of Palestine. After that, donations will go to support our work around the world. In the unlikely event that the funds raised exceed what’s needed for the appeal, we will direct any excess funds to support our work to help keep children safe and healthy around the world.