” In Gaza, children are suffering from violence. Israel lifts blockade of the strip ”

Children living in the Gaza Strip are suffering. After 15 years of life under blockade, four out of five children report that they suffer from depression, anxiety and fear. These are the results of the ‘Trapped’ report, published by Save the kids, which found that the mental well-being of children, young people and health professionals in the area has deteriorated significantly over the years. In fact, 80% of children report emotional distress in Gaza, a sharp increase from 55% in 2018, when a similar survey was conducted. These data show once again how the current situation has a profoundly negative impact on children’s well-being and their hopes for a better future. The report found a significant increase in children who reported feeling scared (84% compared to 50% in 2018), nervous (80% compared to 55%), sad or depressed (77% compared to 62%) and sad. (78% vs. 55%). More than half of them have thought of suicide (55% of them), and three out of five have committed self-harming acts (59%).
In a note, the NGO calls on the Israeli government to lift the blockade of the Gaza Strip and on local authorities, the international community and donors to support the rapid strengthening of child protection and mental health.
In the last 15 years in particular, children in the Gaza Strip have been the victims of six events that have had a devastating impact on them: five outbreaks of violence, in addition to the pandemic from Covid-19, which imposed blockades, air and sea beyond the ground. of the government of Israel limits their lives.
Of the two million Gazans, 47% are children, and more than 800,000 of them have never known a life without blockade. In addition to physical injuries, financial deprivation and lack of access to essential services such as health care, the blockade has, according to the Save the Children report, created a deep mental emergency for girls, boys and young people.
Parents or caregivers who participated in the organization’s data collection indicated that 79% of children and adolescents had an increase in bedwetting episodes compared to previous years and 78% that their children often failed the tasks. About 59% of them stated that there has been an increase in the number of children who have difficulties with language and communication, or who suffer from temporary reactive mutism, a symptom due to trauma or abuse. As Save the Children points out, all of these aspects have a huge impact, both in the short and long term, on development, learning and social interaction between girls, boys and young people.
According to the report, parents and caregivers themselves experience higher levels of emotional distress, and 96% of them report feeling unhappy and constantly anxious.
“The children of Gaza, with whom we spoke to create this relationship, said that they are living in an eternal state of fear, worry, sadness and suffering while waiting for the next round of violence to break out and that they feel unable to sleep or concentrate .. The physical evidence of their discomfort, with nocturnal enuresis, loss of ability to speak or to perform basic tasks, is shocking and should serve as a wake-up call to the international community. “he has declared Jason Leecountry director for Save the kids in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
“Already five years ago, parents and caregivers told us that their ability to support their children was at the limit due to blockade, chronic poverty and insecurity, and that it would most likely be completely undone in the event of another conflict. The data in our report show that their concerns have unfortunately been met “Lee continued.
“We call on all parties to address the root causes of this conflict and to take action to protect all children and families who deserve to live in security and dignity. We need an immediate end to hostilities and an end. on economic deprivation, which are huge stressors in children’s lives, as well as efforts to support the resilience potential of children and their families in the Gaza Strip. concluded Lee. Save the kids calls on the Israeli government to take immediate steps to lift the blockade of the Gaza Strip in accordance with UN Security Council Resolution 1860 (2009).

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