The European Union Supports Palestine Refugees with Cash Assistance Following May 2023 Escalation

20 July 2023


The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) announced a EUR 400,000 contribution from European Union Humanitarian Aid in response to the humanitarian consequences of the May 2023 conflict in Gaza. 

The EU’s contribution to the Agency's response will benefit the families whose shelters have suffered partial damage as a result of the escalation in Gaza. The EU’s cash assistance will help these families embark on the path of recovery to rebuild their lives as quickly as possible.

European Commissioner for Crisis Management, Janez Lenarčič, said: “We stand in solidarity with the Palestinian refugee families affected by the recent violence in Gaza. The EU’s contribution to UNRWA aims to empower vulnerable families with cash assistance to help them regain stability and rebuild their lives.”

According to a Shelter Cluster report, a total of 2,943 housing units were damaged or destroyed, with 2,700 units sustaining partial damage but remaining liveable; some 70 per cent of these households are Palestine Refugee households. The Agency’s initial goal is to assist 1,890 families, totalling approximately 10,584 beneficiaries, with emergency cash assistance of NIS 754 (approximately EUR 196) per household. This one-time multi-purpose cash assistance will allow families to address their immediate relief needs, while helping restore normal living conditions in their damaged homes.

"Many families have lost their homes in the recent war. The European Union’s support for UNRWA is vital for providing immediate relief to families in a way that empowers them to make decisions about what they need to survive," said Thomas White, Director of UNRWA Affairs in Gaza.

UNRWA and the EU remain committed to meeting the immediate needs of Palestinian Refugee families affected by the recent escalation. Through this collaboration, they hope to provide critical support and make it easier for beneficiaries to receive assistance.

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 Note to Editors:

  • The recent hostility in Gaza claimed over 33 lives, including many women and children. Palestine Refugees continue to face enormous challenges due to the psychological trauma caused by prolonged exposure to violence.
  • The sixteen-year-old land, air, and sea blockade and internal political divisions exacerbate the precarious situation.
Background Information: 

UNRWA is the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East. The United Nations General Assembly established UNRWA in 1949 with a mandate to provide humanitarian assistance and protection to registered Palestine refugees in the Agency’s area of operations pending a just and lasting solution to their plight.

UNRWA operates in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, The Gaza Strip, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria. 

Tens of thousands of Palestine refugees who lost their homes and livelihoods due to the 1948 conflict continue to be displaced and in need of support, nearly 75 years on.

UNRWA helps Palestine Refugees achieve their full potential in human development through quality services it provides in education, health care, relief and social services, protection, camp infrastructure and improvement, microfinance, and emergency assistance. UNRWA is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions.


For more information, please contact:

Juliette Touma
UNRWA Director of Communications
+962-79-867-4628 (on whatsapp)
Tamara Alrifai
UNRWA Spokesperson/ Director of External Relations & Communications
+962 (0)79 090 0140