Qatar Fund for Development Contributes to the UNRWA Summer Fun Weeks in Gaza

07 July 2022
Palestine refugee children participating in the UNRWA Summer Fun Weeks in Gaza happily display the tote bags containing coloring books and colored pencils they received from the Qatar Fund for Development. at the Beit Hanon UNRWA Girls School. © 2022 UNRWA Photo

Palestine refugee children participating in the UNRWA Summer Fun Weeks in Gaza happily display the tote bags containing coloring books and colored pencils they received from the Qatar Fund for Development. at the Beit Hanon UNRWA Girls School. © 2022 UNRWA Photo

In light of the increasing psychological trauma Palestine refugee children suffer from, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) has launched psychosocial summer activities known as the UNRWA Summer Fun Weeks (SFWs). Taking place between 25 and 28 July, the SFWs will support children’s well-being and strengthen their resilience in the face of multiple rounds of conflict they have survived. The Qatar Fund for Development (QFFD) is a contributor towards the Summer Fun Weeks, as well as the symposium on mental health at the conclusion of these activities.

For four weeks, more than 120,000 Palestine refugee girls and boys, including children with disabilities, will be able to interact with their peers through a variety of activities, such as greening, recycling, sports, drawing, handicrafts, and learning a new language.  In addition to providing a safe space for carefree play, this will help promote the social values of leadership, respect and cooperation in 83 locations across the Gaza Strip. UNRWA has also distributed 5500 QFFD-funded tote bags containing coloring books and colored pencils to students at five UNRWA schools participating in the SFWs.

The Palestine refugee children who are participating in these activities, the eldest of whom will be younger than 16 years old, have witnessed four conflicts and have never experienced the luxury of free movement or having power for 24 consecutive hours. The overwhelming majority of them have never moved out of the confined coastal enclave of Gaza.

“UNRWA is grateful for this Qatar Fund for Development (QFFD) which comes at the right time to support the children of Gaza and reduce their suffering and to give them the opportunity to have fun,” said Jenifer Austin, the Officer-in-Charge of UNRWA Affairs in Gaza.

Qatar Fund for Development has been one of the major donors to UNRWA as it contributed more than US$ 25 million towards Palestinian refugees in Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Gaza, and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, for 2021 and 2022.

The State of Qatar has long been an important donor to UNRWA through its government and through several Qatar-based organizations in the fields of development and relief such as QFFD, Qatar Charity, Education Above All, and the Qatar Red Crescent. Since its establishment, the contributions provided by the State of Qatar to UNRWA have totaled US$ 138 million enabling UNRWA to continue to provide essential services to Palestine refugees across the Middle East.

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 5.7 million Palestine refugees registered with UNRWA across its five fields of operation. Its mission is to help Palestine refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, West Bank, including East Jerusalem 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.

For more information, please contact:

Tamara Alrifai
UNRWA Spokesperson
Mobile: 
+962 (0)79 090 0140