“We live in a prison with no security or stability in it”; With these words, families tried to express their situation in UNRWA shelter schools; More than 300 people have been living in shelter schools for nearly a month, after they lost their homes as a result of the Israeli bombing during the recent war on Gaza.
A state of sadness and oppression experienced by mothers who are unable to meet the aspirations of their children due to the lack of resources in schools, and they feel great sorrow for the loss and displacement of homes without a suitable shelter for themselves and their families. Read also UNRWA schools are a haven for the displaced in Gaza Elderly people in Gaza.. War is “a piece of hell” and the resistance “has raised our heads” The occupation army kills women.. Horrific stories of the martyrdom of 39 women in Gaza Israeli bombardment of a house in Al-Shati refugee camp, west of Gaza City
Between the war and the Corona pandemic
Sabreen Ghabayen, 32, who is from the town of Beit Hanoun and a mother of 7 children, says, “I spend most of my time with my children in the classroom so that they do not mix with anyone at school and get infected with the Corona virus, so spreading the infection is a worrying matter because there are children and elderly people in the school, and unfortunately we live in difficult conditions.” Difficulty between war and the Corona pandemic.
And she adds – to Al Jazeera Net – “Water and some food aid are available here, which are distributed according to the times of breakfast and lunch, with the sound of the bell ringing. The bathrooms are shared for more than 5 or 6 families on one floor.”
As for Um Husam Hassanein, 43, a resident of the eastern border region of Shujaiya, she was displaced with her nine children to the New Gaza School, and then moved to the Beach School.
She says – to Al Jazeera Net – “The wars eat our souls while we are alive. I left the house and left the joy of Eid that I made with my hands. Maamoul and Samakieh smell everywhere. We went out terrified by the sound of tank shells and aircraft missiles that bombed everywhere around us.”
She added, “The scene of families being displaced from their homes during the war is very terrifying. It is a recurring scene of the emigration that our ancestors lived through in 1948. My children saw martyrs and wounded people cut to pieces. Terrible scenes that led us to enter UNRWA schools because it is considered the safest, but it is not the best and appropriate solution.”
While Raed Tafesh, 41, who was displaced to the beach school during the war from the Zaytoun area in Gaza City with his seven daughters, said, “A person cannot live without dignity, and we have been in school for more than 3 weeks in one classroom with two families and there is no We are related, very tragic, we live in a prison, and I can’t get out of the place worrying about my daughters who can’t sleep without me.”
He continues his speech – to Al Jazeera Net – “I do not want food assistance; I want to return to my home until I feel stable. The children here live in a difficult psychological state because of the horror experience they experienced during the days of the war, and its impact is still increasing because of their presence in school.”
Children in Gaza have been going through a difficult psychological state since the beginning of the war. They cannot return to their normal lives. They suffer from mental wandering and other cases of anxiety during the night. This increased their presence in shelter schools; Because they do not feel safe, secure, and private.
12-year-old girl Hala Tafesh says, “I still make the sound of rockets falling around us in my head. I feel the noise of war and children screaming for fear of explosions around me. I cry a lot when I remember that my toys, my clothes, my bed, and our beautiful memories have been destroyed at home. I can’t sleep at school.” I feel like I am in a public place where there is no safety, there is no cleanliness in the place, we try to clean it first, but it gets polluted quickly because there are a large number of children in the place.”
In turn, the UNRWA spokesman in Gaza, Adnan Abu Hasna, explained that schools are not a substitute for homes, but, according to him, they are a temporary solution for owners of destroyed homes, and he adds that more than 70,000 citizens have taken refuge during the last war in 59 UNRWA schools, distributed in all areas. In the Gaza Strip, there are currently more than 300 people – homeless until now – in two schools, according to Abu Hasna, who adds that UNRWA provides food and water aid to families in shelter schools, and that it will provide urgent financial assistance as a rental allowance for refugee families only.