June 19th , 2022 ― Doha: “During the lockdown due to COVID-19, I suffered mentally and socially, and it was difficult to meet the needs of my young child as a result”. These were the words of Bassem Al-Haban (25), a resident of northern Gaza, as he his and his family’s post-pandemic experience.
Since he has a hearing impairment, his mother communicated his statements as they received a food parcel under a project to distribute emergency aid to the families affected by the Coronavirus pandemic in Gaza, with over QR 1 million funding from Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS).
Using sign language, Al-Haban explained that he lived in financial difficulties, and that his mother contributed some money to buy milk and food for his young child and his wife, who also had hearing issues.
According to him, the economic situation in Gaza is very bad, and he feels disappointed by the scarcity of jobs. Even though he tried repeatedly to find a job, his attempts were thwarted by the fact that employers do not know sign language. Things got even worse with the COVID-19 outbreak. He had to depend on his mother to secure his everyday needs, as she is his only source of income.
Regarding the importance of supporting the Coronavirus-affected families, Dr. Akram Nassar, head of QRCS’s representation office in Gaza, referred to coordination with the Ministry of Social Development to help the poor families affected by the pandemic, by distributing 5,065 food parcels to about 30,000 beneficiaries, including patients, older people, persons with disability, and other vulnerable groups.
He added that the food distributions covered all governorates of Gaza, with each parcel containing 13 staples, such as milk, vegetable oil, rice, pasta, jam, and sugar.
QRCS has carried out a number of humanitarian interventions to combat the Coronavirus pandemic in Gaza. These include the provision of medical supplies, detergents, disinfectants, thermometers, COVID-19 test strips, and food parcels, at a total cost of QR 1,744,000.
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About Qatar Red Crescent (QRCS)
Established in 1978, Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS) is Qatar’s first humanitarian and volunteering organization that aims to assist and empower vulnerable individuals and communities without partiality or discrimination.
QRCS is a member of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, which consists of the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), and 192 National Societies. It is also a member of several GCC, Arab, and Islamic organizations, such as the Islamic Committee of International Crescent and the Arab Red Crescent and Red Cross Organization (ARCO). In this legally recognized capacity, QRCS has access to disaster and conflict zones, thus serving as an auxiliary to the State of Qatar in its humanitarian and social efforts — a role that distinguishes it from other local charities and NGOs.
Both locally and internationally, QRCS has relief and development operations in numerous countries throughout the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Europe, and Central and South America. Its humanitarian mandates include disaster preparedness, response, recovery, and risk reduction. To mitigate the impact of disasters and improve the livelihoods of affected populations, QRCS provides medical services, food, water, shelter, and other needs of local communities. It is also active at the humanitarian diplomacy and advocacy front.
With the help of a vast network of trained, committed staff and volunteers, QRCS aspires to improve the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity, inspired by the seven Fundamental Principles of humanitarian action: humanity, impartiality, neutrality, independence, voluntary service, unity, and universality.