Stars Unite in Support of Gaza Children

16 January 2009

16 January 2009

Damascus

On Friday, 16 January, all three Syrian television channels (Channel 1 and 2, and Syria Satellite TV) and radio will broadcast a daylong telethon as a part of massive fundraising campaign titled "For the Children of Gaza". The campaign, launched on Monday 12 January by UNRWA in cooperation with a number of partners from the public, private and civil society sectors, aims to raise funds in support of the children of Gaza.

The extent of the effort involved in this telethon reflects the sense of urgency felt by all involved in its production. Panos Moumtzis, Director of UNRWA Affairs in Syria said, "This is an enormous undertaking by Syrian television, and one that underscores the urgency of our campaign, and the immediate need to raise cash to provide essential humanitarian supplies to the affected civilians in Gaza, particularly to support the most vulnerable, the children of Gaza, who find themselves hapless victims in an increasingly desperate situation."

The telethon, the first for a Syrian television channel, will be broadcast live on air and involve a host of local and regional celebrities, all of whom will be vigorously and enthusiastically encouraging viewers to dig deep into their pockets to donate for the children of Gaza. Well-known identities demonstrated true humanitarianism by immediately pledging their support to participate in the event, including Abbas al-Nouri, Bassem Yakhoor and Bassel Khayyat.

The telethon will air-live from 0930hrs to 2030hrs. Viewers will be able to call in on the advertised number using the telephone and donate either 50, 100 and/or 1000 Syrian Pounds.

For information only                Not an official record

For further information please contact:

Hala Mukhles
Office: 6133035 ext 314
Mobile: 093-416591

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, and microfinance.

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 (GF), supporting UNRWA’s core activities and 97 per cent reliant on voluntary contributions, has begun each year with a large projected deficit. Currently the deficit stands at US$ 56 million.

For more information, please contact:

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