Crisis in Gaza

Massive destruction of water and sewage systems has reduced water supply to Gaza's entire population. More than a million people desperately need clean water. An estimated 1.8 million people in the Gaza Strip have been affected by the violence in the region. Civilians make up the majority of casualties - around 85%. Oxfam is helping civilians access food, clean water, and emergency health care.

One year on from the 2014 Gaza conflict, most people's lives have not improved and an entire generation of young people face an increasingly bleak future with little hope of jobs, reconstruction or safety.

There has been virtually no reconstruction, there is no permanent ceasefire, no meaningful peace talks, and the blockade is still firmly in place.

The humanitarian needs in Gaza are enormous. Gaza has witnessed its worst destruction in decades and an already vulnerable civilian population has been left even more vulnerable. Our team is helping 380,000 people in desperate need. But we urgently need your support to reach more people in need and to build a lasting peace.

The Situation

An estimated 1.8 million people in the Gaza Strip have been affected by the violence in the region. Civilians make up the majority of casualties - around 85%. Oxfam is helping civilians access food, clean water, and emergency health care.

  • More than 100,000 people (more than half of these children) have had their homes destroyed and are still displaced.
  • Most of the water supply is unsafe to drink and there are power cuts of 12 hours a day.
  • The economy has been devastated, with more than 60 per cent of youth now unemployed - the highest rate in the world. The blockade prevents most people from leaving Gaza or trading with the outside world and markets in the West Bank. Fishermen and farmers are restricted from accessing their land and often shot at while working.
  • More than 40% of people in Gaza - 67% of youth - are now unemployed and 80% of people are in need of aid.
  • More than 300,000 children and youth were left extremely traumatized by the conflict - many of them lost relatives, homes and live in daily fear of renewed bombing. Last year's conflict will affect an entire generation of Gaza for years to come.
  • Restrictions on essential building materials mean that rebuilding homes has yet to begin. At the rate that construction materials are currently able to enter Gaza it will take decades to meet the reconstruction needs.
  • Tens of thousands of Israeli civilians have also been affected by the rocket strikes from Gaza, with buildings being hit and schools and other facilities closed. 69 Israelis have been killed - 64 soldiers and 5 civilians.

Oxfam condemns all violence against civilians. A permanent ceasefire, accountability of all parties for ongoing violations of international law, and an end to the Israeli blockade are needed urgently.

What Oxfam is doing to help

Working with partners, our humanitarian and development work helps around 700,000 people in Gaza affected by the crisis.

  • We provide safe water, rebuild damaged water systems and improve sanitation facilities across much of Gaza.
  • With the World Food Programme, we run a food voucher project that ensures 60,000 people have enough to eat and supports the local economy.
  • We work with farmers and fishermen who are prevented from accessing their livelihoods, and support a hospital and mobile clinics to provide primary healthcare.
  • We help local producers improve the quality of their produce and get it to market, and we help local civil society to advocate for their rights.
  • We campaign for lasting peace and security for all civilians and an end to the blockade.

Oxfam staff and partners, many of whom have been affected by the conflict, are working hard to respond to the mounting humanitarian needs.

Our emergency response includes:

  • delivering safe drinking water (3 litres a day) to 250,000 people
  • installing generators to pump water and repairing damaged water systems.
  • providing emergency food vouchers to 18,000 families (around 148,000 people)
  • supporting medical services (through support to a hospital, health centres and mobile clinics) for about 49,000 people
  • distributing hygiene kits to 26,000 people in shelters.

Oxfam is calling on both sides to agree a lasting solution to the conflict.

We condemn all violence against civilians, both Israeli military actions and Palestinian rocket fire. Civilians have borne the brunt of the attacks and civilians in Gaza make up the vast majority of casualties.

The international community needs to redouble efforts to achieve a just and lasting peace that brings security and development to all Palestinians and Israelis, and respects the basic human right of all peoples to feed their families and live with dignity.

Learn More

Gaza's youth using art to overcome the scars of war, July 7, 2015


Updated July 8, 2015


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