Japan donates additional USD 2 million to UNRWA

26 December 2012
27 December 2012
 
The Government of Japan has contributed an additional USD 2 million to support the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) emergency work in theGaza Strip.This donation comes in response to the Agency’s call for support for Palestine refugees recovering from the recent violence. The contribution will be mainly used to cover emergency bedding materials and hygiene kits for adults and babies.
 
Civiliansin the coastal enclave have been hit hard by the recent Israeli military offensive “Operation Pillar of Defense” that lasted eight days. At the height of the escalation, approximately 12,000 individuals in Gaza City and theNorthern Gaza governorate fled their homes and sought refuge in emergency shelters set up in 14 UNRWA and two government schools. Despite the violence, UNRWA amplified its efforts to ensure that core public and emergency services to Palestine refugees remained in operation. Wherever possible, sanitation work and health centres remained in operation to assist displaced people.
 
This latest donation from Japan will go towards providing non-food items to assist UNRWA in combating the effects of this recent conflict on Palestine refugees in Gaza.
 
This year alone, Japan has given over USD 22.5 million to UNRWA, making it the Agency’s ninth-largest donor.
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Background information:

UNRWA is a United Nations agency established by the General Assembly in 1949 and is mandated to provide assistance and protection to a population of some 5 million registered Palestine refugees. Its mission is to help Palestine refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, West Bank and the Gaza Strip to achieve their full potential in human development, pending a just solution to their plight. UNRWA’s services encompass education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, microfinance and emergency assistance.
 
Financial support to UNRWA has not kept pace with an increased demand for services caused by growing numbers of registered refugees, expanding need, and deepening poverty. As a result, the Agency‘s General Fund, supporting UNRWA’s core activities and 97 per cent reliant on voluntary contributions, has begun each year with a large projected deficit.
 

Background Information

UNRWA is confronted with an increased demand for services resulting from a growth in the number of registered Palestine refugees, the extent of their vulnerability and their deepening poverty. UNRWA is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions and financial support has been outpaced by the growth in needs. As a result, the UNRWA Programme Budget, which supports the delivery of core essential services, operates with a large shortfall. UNRWA encourages all Member States to work collectively to exert all possible efforts to fully fund the Agency’s Programme Budget. UNRWA emergency programmes and key projects, also operating with large shortfalls, are funded through separate funding portals.

UNRWA is a United Nations agency established by the General Assembly in 1949 and mandated to provide assistance and protection to some 5 million registered Palestine refugees. Its mission is to help Palestine refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, West Bank and the Gaza Strip achieve their full human development potential, pending a just and lasting solution to their plight. UNRWA services encompass education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, protection and microfinance.

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