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A nurse and mother living through the bombings in gaza

Our October Peace Mail comes to us from Amel* who is a nurse in our clinics in Gaza. She bravely shares with us her experiences during the recent crisis and how her family are coping. Your generous monthly gifts provide for the clinic she works in.

A nurse like Amel working in the health clinic. DSPR Image Frame

My name is Amel*, I’m 26 and a staff nurse in Shijaiya at the Middle East Council of Churches clinic, which Act for Peace supports. I am very thankful to be alive to share my story with you. I live near the clinic with my husband and two daughters, aged 4 and 2. I experienced the most terrifying time, beginning on the night of 19th July 2014.

In the days prior, tensions in Gaza had been high. That evening our home had no electricity and it was hard to see around the house. During the night, F16 warplanes began to drop missiles and then shells from tanks started. I could see the street from a window, it looked like an earthquake zone with fallen houses and torn up roads. I knew the Red Cross and the Palestinian Red Crescent Society couldn’t reach anyone to help the injured and dying.

“Warplanes began to drop missiles.”

I was dreadfully scared. All I could do was hold my little one as my husband held our 4 year old. When sunlight came, we took our girls and ran from the house. There were dead bodies in the streets but I had to keep going as the tanks were firing shells. We walked for a long time until we reached a hospital. When we got inside, I couldn’t stop crying. I tried to but the tears kept coming, even when my family comforted me. As a nurse, I realised I was experiencing shock due to what I had gone through, and what my two little girls had seen.

“I couldn’t stop crying.”

We were finally able to rest at the hospital and slept on the floor as there were no beds. In the morning, my colleague phoned and told me to bring my family to stay with her for a few days as it was too unsafe to return home. She was very generous.

After a week, my family went to live with my sister but the bombings were there, too. All of us left and now we live in a UN school. I wish I was stronger but I have been so afraid to let my daughters out of my sight. It isn’t safe for my family.

- Amel

* Names have been changed to protect identities

As well as providing support for the Gaza health clinics, Act for Peace has an emergency appeal for the people of Gaza to assist during this crisis. Find out more about our Gaza Crisis Appeal here.

Download this Peace Mail in pdf

Please give generously to continue our life-saving work here or find out about how you can become an Act for Peace Partner.

Through your kind support, Act for Peace and our partner the Middle East Council of Churches’ Department of Service to Palestinian Refugees, operates primary health care clinics in the Gaza Strip. These health care centres in Shijaiya, Darraj and Rafah localities have operated since 1952 to provide vital health care services in poor, densely populated and isolated areas.

Through your kind gifts, health services have already been provided to close to 38,000 vulnerable and economically disadvantaged people, supporting baby and mother care, nutrition and dental care, in addition to laboratory testing services, clinical examinations and the provision of free prescribed medicine. Especially notable is our partner’s work in tackling childhood anaemia and malnutrition, as well as their comprehensive package of services to expectant mothers and young babies.

Act for Peace is deeply concerned for the welfare of the people of Gaza following the most recent devastating conflict. At the time of going to print more than 2,100 Palestinians and more than 70 Israelis had been killed in the conflict. Act for Peace denounces all forms of armed violence from both sides of the conflict and is committed to providing ongoing emergency relief and health care for civilians in the Gaza Strip.

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