Emergency relief in Gaza

A small minority of about 1,300 Christians live in the Gaza strip among a total population of about 1.8 million. The population and specifically the children suffer from extreme hardship due to the ongoing conflict between Palestine and Israel in Gaza, the coming to power of Hamas, the operation “Cast Lead” in early 2009, the worsening of the violence after the operation “Pillar of clouds” carried out in november 2012 and “Protective Edge” in july 2014, as well as the Israeli blockade in general in Gaza.

The Gaza Strip
The Gaza strip is around 40km in length and 10km in width.  This coastal area of land is home to 1,816,379 million Arab Palestinians, around half of which are minors.  Around two thirds of the population are refugees, forced to abandon their homes following the wars of 1948 and 1967 and move to one of the 8 refugee camps now found on the Gaza strip.  The high population density coupled with the difficulties following the recent embargo imposed as a security measure by Israel has made the Gaza Strip one of the most troubled areas in the Middle East.  Most of the population survives on less than two dollars a day and around 80% depend on humanitarian aid provided by international organizations and other NGO’s.

The Catholic parish in Gaza
The Catholic parish in Gaza counts just under 200 members, at present. Despite a lively and warm community life, the atmosphere has unfortunately been dampened by recent events. Arab Christians face a difficult situation in the Muslim environment in Gaza, though they share the same fate as their Palestinian brethren – Israeli occupation and respectively the blockade of Gaza – being Christians, they aren’t part of the governing Muslim majority and thus are often viewed as collaborators of the West. The economy has long since collapsed, resulting in soaring unemployment and poverty. There are currently serious shortages medical supplies and little or no access to clean water.

The project of Association pro Terra Sancta in Gaza supports two activities:

Support to the Christian community in  Gaza

Economic support to the families and Christian children in Gaza

Support for the disabled people in the Gaza Strip

Support to two facilities, offering training and education regarding respecting and taking care of disabled people in Palestinian society

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Weihnachtsfest 2009 mit Patriarch in Gaza
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Weihnachtsfest 2009 mit Patriarch in Gaza
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Weihnachtsfest 2009 mit Patriarch in Gaza
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related stories

Support the Christians in Gaza: a job for young people and electricity generators for families (January 2015)

“Christians in Gaza, all one family”: the words of the pastor of Gaza (September 2014)

“This is what I have found in Gaza”. The emergency continues, the needs are huge. (August 2014)

Voices from Gaza: the Sisters of the Incarnate Word (July 2014)

Bombing near the Catholic parish in Gaza (July 2014)

To keep from losing hope: an appeal to support the inhabitants of Gaza (July 2014)

Gaza and Syria: The endless tragedies in the Middle East and the voices of those on the ground (July 2014)

“A window on Gaza”: a project for training young journalists in Gaza (December 2013)

“Taking care of the neediest – welcoming and training”: a new project is underway to help children with problems in the Gaza Strip (June 2013)

Christmas in Gaza, praying for a normal life (December 2012)

Gaza (November 2012)

Father Pierbattista Pizzaballa, Custos of the Holy Land and President of ATS pro Terra Sancta, on the situation in Gaza (November 2012)

Emergency in the Gaza Strip: your aid is needed to help support the Christian community (November 2012)

From Gaza to Jerusalem: the story of a young Christian of Gaza (April 2012)

Gaza: ATS pro Terra Sancta continues to be involved in supporting the youngest (April 2012)

ATS pro Terra Sancta will not forget the Christians of Gaza (January 2012)

ATS pro Terra Sancta continues its involvement in combating disability (July 2011)

Conclusion of the second training course on disability in Palestine (January 2011)

A new bathroom for the disabled in Gaza thanks to the support of ATS pro Terra Sancta (December 2010)

Gaza – support to the Christians (November 2010)