IFRC

During and after the crisis, Kuwait Red Crescent Society mobilised to aid the people of Gaza

Published: 15 October 2014 16:52 CET

After 50 days of violence, Gaza became in desperate need for urgent relief operations to salvage communities affected by the crisis, and rebuild and repair the wiped-out buildings and damaged infrastructure in the Strip.

Local and foreign humanitarian agencies were called on to mobilise their resources and staff to respond to the urgent needs in the Strip, and among the first organisations to rush to the scene was the Kuwait Red Crescent Society (KRCS) who succeeded in delivering basic and vital aid like food, medications and other health services to many Palestinian families.

“The Kuwait Red Crescent Society entered the Gaza Strip on the first day of violence and it adopted four different passages to secure the delivery of aid,” said KRCS deputy Chairperson of the Board of Directors Anwar Al Hasawi.

Al Hasawi explained: “The first aid shipment entered the Strip through the (Palestinian) Welfare Association (Mo’asasat Al Ta’awon) and the second through KRCS representative in the Occupied Palestine Territory who facilitated the access of a 46-truck convoy, all loaded with food parcels and medicines.”

Forty-nine other trucks of medical and food supplies entered the Strip through neighbouring Egypt, Al Hasawi said, adding that airspace constituted the fourth passage to Gaza, as KRCS aircrafts transported more than 40 tonnes of medical aid.

The Kuwait Red Crescent Society has offered about 200 tonnes of medication and medical supplies and equipment to different hospitals in Gaza, primarily due to the drug shortage faced in the Strip because of the high casualty and injury toll.

Despite its quick response and impactful delivery of aid in neighbourhoods that suffered from the unrest, KRCS staff and volunteers were faced with the difficulty of attending to and dealing with all those affected by the crisis in Gaza, primarily because their numbers kept on increasing during the 50-day emergency. Nevertheless, the volunteers of the Kuwait Red Crescent Society succeeded in providing rescue services and psychosocial support to all those who needed and demanded assistance.

The Kuwait Red Crescent Society will continue to offer additional help and support to the people of Gaza, especially during the reconstruction phase.

“We will carry on with the delivery of aid in all areas of the Gaza Strip in coordination and cooperation with the Palestine Red Crescent Society,” assured the deputy chairperson of the KRCS Board of Directors. “We are keen on and committed to standing by the Palestinian people who are enduring difficult live conditions and facing a humanitarian crisis.”

Al Hasawi revealed as well that the Kuwait Red Crescent Society is currently preparing several relief projects to be launched in Gaza in the coming days, remarking that their implementation will take place through Egypt or through the established air bridge linking Kuwait to the Occupied Palestine Territory.

The latest round of violence in the Gaza Strip left more than 2,000 people dead and 11,000 others wounded, in addition to completely destroying about 17,000 houses and partially damaging 40,000 others. The violence also took its toll on the Strip’s infrastructure which witnessed severe damages. The Palestine Red Crescent Society has been at the forefront of relief operations since the onset of the crisis, mobilising its staff, volunteers, vehicles, health clinics and centres to transport the wounded to the nearest hospitals and provide first-aid and psychosocial support to vulnerable individuals and families in Gaza.

Although a permanent ceasefire agreement was reached between different parties in Gaza, the upcoming phase requires special attention to the urgent needs of the affected population, particularly the displaced, and to ensure that access to basic services such as health, water and electricity is secured. On Sunday, international donors convening in the Egyptian capital Cairo pledged 5.4 billion US dollars in aid to help rebuild the war-battered Strip, including 200 million US dollars offered by Kuwait.





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