Friday, August 24, 2012
Dr Mona brings love from Gaza to Rochdale
Dr Mona Elfarra, author of the blog (http://fromgaza.blogspot.co.uk/ ) and the book FROM GAZA, WITH LOVE, was in Rochdale on Thursday (23 August 2012) meeting members of Rochdale Palestine Solidarity Campaign and Rochdale and Littleborough Peace Group.
Dr Elfarra describes herself as “a physician by training, a human rights and women's rights activist by practice”. She was born and raised in Khan Yunis in Southern Gaza and has lived most of her life in Gaza City. She trained as a physician in Egypt and in Cardiff and is a co-founder of the Al Awda Hospital in Jabalia refugee camp. She is also deputy chair of the Red Crescent Society of the Gaza Strip, Palestine and, since 2005, has been director of the Middle East Children’s Alliance (http://www.mecaforpeace.org/ ).
She was in Rochdale visiting Pat Sanchez and other members of the Rochdale branch of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign.
Dr Elfarra said,
“Gaza is a difficult place to live. We Palestinians and especially our children continue to suffer the impact of war and of occupation and siege. The vicious attacks by the Israeli Defence Force in recent years have left our children without regular schooling, without adequate medical care and often without food or clean water. Some have lost their parents and many are still traumatised by the brutal attacks and bombardment of their homes by the Israelis which they witnessed during operation ‘Cast Lead’. 20% of children under 15 are suffering post-traumatic stress disorder. But Gaza is also history and civilization, the third largest city in Palestine. It has survived many upheavals and will continue to do so. The children of Gaza still have strength and resilience, despite all that they have suffered and continue to suffer. Even if their schools have been reduced to rubble by Israeli bombs and bulldozers, they still want to learn. They still want to play and they are still proud to be Palestinians. However, they also need food, medicines and many other resources. The Middle East Children’s Alliance ships medicines, medical supplies, powdered milk, fortified children’s cereal and art and school supplies to Gaza. We have also supplied wheelchairs and an ambulance. We have provided clean drinking water to children in Palestine and water purification and desalination units for 38 schools and kindergartens in Gaza where very few people have regular access to clean water and some areas have no water supply at all.
We know that many people in Rochdale and throughout Britain are keen to help in such work and we very much welcome the support we receive from groups such as Rochdale Palestine Solidarity Campaign. It is important that Palestinian children know that people in Rochdale have heard about their situation and will support them in their struggles for shelter, nutrition, education and a national identity. It is important that people across the world know that children in Gaza cannot yet rely on most of the things that others can take for granted, and it is essential that we maintain solidarity across countries and across communities in our common struggle against injustice and oppression.”
Pat Sanchez said
“It was a joy to meet Mona and to learn more about her work. Rochdale PSC will continue to support the work of the Middle East Children’s Alliance. Anyone who wants to hear more about this and our campaigning in Rochdale should contact Rochdale PSC coordinator Jenny Turner on 07787 575 570 or firstname.lastname@example.org or join us at Crescent Radio for our monthly meeting at 7.15pm on the second Monday of each month.
For more information about Dr Elfarra’s blog from Gaza, please see http://fromgaza.blogspot.co.uk/
For more information about the Middle East Children’s Alliance, please see http://www.mecaforpeace.org/
For more information about the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC), please see http://www.palestinecampaign.org/
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