Gaza stories: “Five hundred families are living in 69 tents”

Muhammad Saleh, living in Al- Rayan Camp receives a blanket from Caritas

Muhammad Saleh, living in Al- Rayan Camp receives a blanket from Caritas

For Gazan refugees, like 56 year old Muhammad Saleh a father of eight, living in tents stirs memories of the tragedy that began 61 years ago, when the 1948 war forced thousands of Palestinians into refugee camps.

“I was a child back then living in Al-Yarmook refugee camp. I know the feeling of returning from school to a tent. I know the feeling of not completely feeling warm or safe and watching his parents struggle to provide food,” he said.

“I really hate to see my children go through the same experience. I lived all my life without having a happy day.”

Tent camps like Al- Rayan are temporary accommodation for the Palestinians who lost their homes after Israel’s three-week assault on the Gaza Strip on Dec. 2008.

“ They have to live through cold and rain. Psychologically they are still afraid,” Khaled Abu Ali, Al- Rayan camp coordinator said.

Because of this women are sent in the evening to stay with friends and family.

Although some aids have been received conditions of life in the camp are uncomfortable.

Caritas staff and volunteers have already distributed 500 hundred blankets to the neediest families. The displaced people living in Izbet Abed Rabo and Al Rayan Camp received 250 blankets, Al Ahli Hospital and The Holy Family School each received 100, and Mother Theresa Nuns received 50.

Khaled thanked Caritas Jerusalem for their efforts to aid the displaced people but pleaded organizations to do more to help because the need is great.

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Filed under Conflicts and Disasters, Emergencies, Emergencies in the Palestine, Jerusalem, Middle East & North Africa

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