DAY 14:
A meal for a child in the Gaza Strip

A childhood

between rockets and shellfire

Media continuously confronts us with the conflict in Gaza. The conflict between Israel and Palestine, which now has continued for almost half a century, leads to recurring humanitarian emergencies, particularly in the disputed areas. Hardly anyone knows that the Gaza Strip is mainly composed of sand dunes and is even slightly smaller than the German state of Bremen. Journalists rarely focus on those who are not responsible for the conflict and who have to grow up in an environment of violence and great uncertainty: the children.

Necessity

 

Child poverty

Activity

 

Lunch will be provided for school children

Countable effort

After around 12 months

Number of meals that are issued to students

Result

After around 3 years

Number of children who appear in the classroom compared to the previous year

Systemic effect

After around 7 years

Children receive better education and are healthier. This gives them the chance to improve their situation under their own steam

Background

According to the UN Assistance Program for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA), 80% of Gazans are dependent on food aid. Since about half of the population in Gaza are children (Palestinian Bureau of Statistics), it makes the situation particularly difficult. Due to import restrictions on goods of daily demand, food and other commodities are difficult to obtain or are very expensive in the Gaza Strip. According to a study by the American aid organization ANERA, a large number of children in the Gaza Strip suffer from chronic effects of malnutrition: anemia, stunted growth, and others.

The good deed

With a warm meal at school the organisation can help the involved children on two counts: Firstly, the organisation improves their diet. Secondly, children are given a chance to go to school in the first place. Often the families in the Gaza Strip cannot afford the schooling for their children. The children need to contribute to the family income. However, if they get a free meal at school the incentive for families to send their children to school increases.

Challenge

A particular challenge is that many schools are not set up properly to provide a school lunch. They lack furniture, kitchen equipment, cooking facilities.

About Gaza

Gaza City

Capital

4,420,549 (2013)

Number of inhabitants

1924

Gross domestic product per capita per year

110

Human Development Index

The refugee camp in the Gaza Strip is among the most densely populated regions of the world.