Gaza Emergency Relief Effort

FROM the Middle East Children’s Alliance (MECA)

Dear Friends,

I’m writing you now from Gaza City where I have had just four hours of electricity in four days! As you know, the Israeli military prevents fuel from entering Gaza for power, heat, transportation, etc.

I’m using this precious opportunity to reach out to you for help because the situation here is so desperate.

You may have seen the news that we are havingdrenching rains and freezing hail.  This cruel weather, combined with the horrible conditions of the seven-year Israeli blockade has created an overwhelming disaster here.  For everyone.  But especially for people in the poorest communities and in refugee camps.

Ten of thousands of people have lost their homes and all their belongings. Thousands more are huddling in buildings with broken windows and leaking roofs. Whole neighborhoods are underwater. Streams of sewage run through city streets, spreading disease. As I walk thorough the refugee camps I see books, clothes and furniture floating by.

But as usual the people of Gaza are coming together. They are sharing the little they have, transporting their neighbors to safety, opening up their homes and hearts.

It makes me so proud to see this “internal solidarity.”  And I’m grateful that many people now sheltered in school buildings at least have clean water from the units MECA installed.

But I know you understand that what we can do by ourselves in Gaza is not nearly enough.

We need your help, once again.

So far MECA has made it possible for me to go out day and night going from shops to neighborhoods to refugee camps shelters in schools to deliver basic necessities to families.

I am already buying and distributing plastic sheets to cover roofs and windows, powdered milk for children, blankets, socks, pajamas and jackets.

There is so much more we can and must do in this crisis.

Please, I’m asking you, once again, to send a donation to MECA now.

MECA will immediately wire the money you give, along with that of hundreds of others, I hope. So that I can continue to help families in Gaza survive this disaster.

From Gaza with love.

P.S. Right now, we are desperate to meet people’s immediate needs for warmth and shelter.  But soon we will begin to see a health crisis from the freezing temperatures and the exposure to sewage.  Please, send the most generous contribution you can now. Thank you.

Photo: A member of the Palestinian civil defense paddles a boat as he evacuates a man and his children after their house was flooded with rainwater on a stormy day in the northern Gaza Strip December 14, 2013.
(Reuters / Mohammed Salem)