We at Hope and Play abhor the denial of human rights from children of all national, ethnic or religious origin. We especially abhor these when man-made, such as through acts of physical or psychological violence. In Gaza, the Israeli government's actions of occupation, blockade, and the full military assault of December 2008 and January 2009 without due attention to protecting civilians has left the local population facing a humanitarian crisis. As a result of these actions, Gaza's children have been subjected to the following:
This comes following the Israeli and Egyptian blockades of Gaza, which are still ongoing and are preventing the entry of essential supplies into Gaza. See our media reports page, which has a rich chronicle of events affecting Gaza's children as reported by the world's press.
Updates on Gaza's Children from our Facebook Page
Hope and Play for Children of Gaza on Facebook
What we're doing in Gaza
We are financing a number of projects focussing on Gaza's children.
We funded the Sheikh Ajleen beach site at the UNRWA Summer Games. These games, which this year involved about a quarter of a million children from Gaza, comprise of a variety of sports, arts, theatre and craft projects for the children, and are a welcome respite for Gaza's heavily traumatised children. Over 800 children went through our site, many from some of the most heavily impacted areas of Gaza. Here is a video of our site.
At another location, UNRWA (the United Nations Relief and Works Agency) organised a successful world record kite flying attempt, at which over 2,000 kites were flown simultaneously to break the existing record of less than 1,000. This is a video of that event.
The kite flying record was made from a beach in Beit Lahiya, in Northern Gaza. At Hope and Play, we completed our first play area in Beit Lahiya. It is one of the most affected areas of Gaza, suffering more than most of the rest of Gaza from the violence with the Israeli military. These are pictures of the site before and after completion.
We are currently financing a children's library also in Beit Lahiya, and are looking into projects for more libraries as well as the education of handicapped children in Gaza.