“We will rebuild it”: MAP partner joins clean-up campaign in Gaza

This week thousands of Palestinians came together to clean up the destruction caused by Israel’s 11-day military offensive, as part of the “We will rebuild it” campaign organised by the Municipality of Gaza with Medical Aid Palestinians (MAP)’s partner, the Social Developmental Forum (SDF).

Twenty young men and women from SDF’s “WASLA” project, a MAP-funded initiative which supports local advocacy for the rights of persons with disabilities in Gaza, helped clear rubble from the streets outside the Al-Shoroq Tower, which was destroyed by Israeli airstrikes and shelling.

Yasser Gharbia, from the WASLA project, explained why he joined the campaign: “We all have a role in supporting our Palestinian cause, and one of our roles is participating in this campaign, through which we can restore life to our homes, our streets and our city. Whatever the Israeli military has destroyed, we will rebuild it until Gaza becomes more beautiful than before.”

The campaign, which started on Saturday, will continue for a week and will cover all of the streets that were targeted by the Israeli bombardment.

Naji Naji didn’t let his physical disability hold him back from joining in the campaign. “I am sure that Gaza will return again, with the help of its youth, women and men,” he said. “Disability cannot prevent me from participating in this campaign, advocating for my Palestinian cause and contributing even a small part to supporting it. All Palestinians with disabilities are ready to help build and reconstruct Gaza despite their disabilities and the challenges they face.”

Many of the young people used the skills they had learned during a WASLA training programme to share the situation in Gaza online and advocate for the Palestinian cause through social media platforms. This also helped alert other Palestinians in Gaza to join the clean-up campaign.

According to Gaza’s Ministry of Public Works and Housing, 258 buildings, comprising 1,042 housing and commercial units, were destroyed during the recent violence. In addition, 769 housing units were severely damaged, and rendered uninhabitable. At least 248 Palestinians were killed, including 66 children, and a further 1,948 injured.

MAP is continuing to provide vital support to health services, including the procurement of essential drugs and disposables, and ongoing support to limb reconstruction, neurosurgery, and blood bank services. Please support these efforts by donating today.

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