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UNRWA concludes Gaza Food and Education Projects Made Possible by the Government of Brunei Darussalam
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) has concluded food and education projects for Palestine refugees in Gaza, made possible by a generous contribution from the Government of Brunei. In 2020, the Agency received US$ 1.25 million from the Government of Brunei. This funding was allocated to support Palestine refugees in the besieged Gaza Strip, helping them to meet their basic food and education needs.
Specifically, this generous contribution from Brunei helped mitigate the severity of food insecurity facing over a million vulnerable Palestine refugees living in Gaza. Food parcels containing the equivalent of 80 per cent of a person’s daily caloric requirements were distributed. In addition to this, the funding supported the provision of education for some 22,000 Palestine refugee students, half of them are girls. Supporting twenty UNRWA schools across Gaza, the funds also contributed to the provision of quality education.
Humanitarian and socioeconomic conditions for most of Gaza’s population are dire. After intense hostilities in May and the ongoing fourteen-year Israeli blockade, widespread devastation mars the lives of some two million Palestinians living in the besieged coastal enclave. With poverty and unemployment already high among Palestine refugees in Gaza and pre-existing vulnerabilities exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, many families were already facing challenges even before the latest round of hostilities in May.
UNRWA Spokesperson Tamara Alrifai, said: “Now, more than ever, UNRWA needs the support of its partners and donors around the world. The government of Brunei was able to help us support refugees in Gaza during the past years. We truly hope that the generosity that Brunei is famous for will continue, and that the government of Brunei to renew its support to Palestine refugees in Gaza.”
Brunei also generously provides a multiyear contribution in support of the Agency’s core Programme Budget for 2020-2024. UNRWA provides a range of critical services to Palestine refugees registered with UNRWA across its five fields of operation, namely, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, the West Bank, including East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip. Its services include education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, protection, microfinance and emergency relief.
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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 5.4 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.
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