distribution of water in school
Saaed Rafiq al Madhoun/CARE

"We desperately need more humanitarian aid to come into Gaza."

More than two weeks of unprecedented escalation of violence between Gaza and Israel have left millions of people in desperate need and with unimaginable psychological impacts. CARE West Bank and Gaza Country Director Hiba Tibi describes the devastating impacts in the region, including for her team and urges for a ceasefire:

“This morning I spoke to my colleagues in Khan Younis, like I do every morning. It’s an increasingly painful conversation. They can’t sleep at night due to the incessant airstrikes. The daughter of one of my colleagues has stopped talking. Completely stopped. I am so worried about the children of Gaza, many of whom have now lost their families. I keep thinking: who will take care of them? How will they process all this trauma?

My colleagues have had to flee their homes in northern Gaza ten days ago and struggle like everyone else around them with overcrowded shelters, very little water, hours-long queues for a loaf of bread, no electricity. Hoping their children won’t need hospital care as hospital generators are just hours away from running out of the last drop of fuel. But still my team spends every day doing their best to provide humanitarian aid to the most vulnerable, with increasingly limited resources.

We need many more trucks to enter Gaza with food, with medical supplies, with fuel. And we need the water and electricity taps back on. No one can truck bottled water for 2.3 million people. If we have electricity, if we have fuel, we can power the water pumps, so that people stop drinking salty and contaminated water and the waterborne diseases that we are already seeing stop spreading. Hospitals can keep their incubators going for newborn babies whose lives are now at risk, as are those of patients on dialysis, the wounded, and many more people in need of critical care that can’t be provided without power and medicines. And with fuel, our trucks can bring urgently needed aid to all those whose lives depend on it.

We had emergency plans in place, but even our worst-case scenario was nothing like what is happening now. We desperately need humanitarian aid to come into Gaza in large quantities, we need water, we need electricity, we need fuel. We need a ceasefire because aid cannot be distributed under the bombs. And we need all that now.”

For media enquiries, please contact Iolanda Jaquemet, Senior Humanitarian Communications Coordinator, CARE International via: [email protected].