Zaragoza City Council contribute to the improvement of environmental conditions in the refugee camps of the West Bank

05 May 2009

5 May 2009

East Jerusalem

In response to UNRWA’s 2008 Emergency Appeal, the Spanish regional City Council of Zaragoza (capital of the autonomous community of Aragon) contributed with EUR 71,678 to UNRWA’s Emergency Environmental Health Programme in the West Bank. This contribution funded projects for infrastructural works in ten refugee camps across the West Bank and created 319 job days benefiting 93 labourers.

UNRWA’s cooperation with the City Council of Zaragoza, funneled through the Spanish Committee of UNRWA, dates to the early activities of the Committee in Spain. Zaragoza’s continuous support to UNRWA and Palestine refugees has translated into projects on shelter rehabilitation and reconstruction in the West Bank in 2006 and 2007, amounting to a total contribution of EUR 100,000.

In 2008, the City Council of Zaragoza funded an important part of the Environmental Health Programme in the West Bank that has successfully been completed, benefiting over 62,000 refugees in six refugee camps.

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,  projected for 2016 to stand at US$ 81 million. 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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