Emergency Appeal from the Diocese of Jerusalem for al-Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza City

22 May 2018

Emergency surgery at al-Ahli Arab Hospital

Emergency Appeal from the Diocese of Jerusalem for al-Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza City

The Anglican al-Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza City has implemented an emergency response to the crisis caused by the overwhelming number of casualties sustained during protests across the Gaza Strip on Monday 14th May 2018.

In a statement Archbishop Suheil Dawani, Primate of the Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and the Middle East and Archbishop of Jerusalem, said: ” Our Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza (AAH) had been literally working around the clock to serve the wounded from the escalating violence in the Gaza Strip ever since the United States formally opened its Embassy in Jerusalem on May 14.”

“ The wounded coming to our hospital have no money, but no one is ever turned away,” Archbishop Suheil said. “Most of the men, women, and children who are treat at AAH have been injured from live ammunition, rubber bullets and tear gas intoxication. I appeal to all our Friends around the World to give generously to this humanitarian crisis, as we, the Church, the hands of Jesus in this place, respond to this tragedy in love and compassion to the wounded.”

“The situation is critical at all Gaza hospitals including AAH”, writes Mrs. Suhaila Tarazi, the hospital’s director. “The death toll in Gaza continues to rise”.

According to WHO figures, 2768 people were injured, 1357 of which suffered gunshot wounds, so the immediate need is great.

Mrs. Tarazi states that the hospital needs “to obtain emergency medicine, medical supplies, and fuel for generators. Ahli needs to support doctors and nurses who are working non-stop to meet the crushing flow of the injured and traumatized.” Mrs. Tarazi reiterated that the hospital, as a humanitarian organisation of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem, “adopts a rights based approach and provides healthcare to the needy without discrimination of faith, gender, social class or political affiliation”.

The Diocesan Programs Development Director, Mr. Hanna Theodorie, reports that the hospital has also been working with children whose “family members, friends and neighbours are dead or injured. These children are suffering, and Ahli Hospital is providing them compassionate counselling and psycho-social therapy”. In addition al-Ahli Arab hospital has been assigned to treat the most catastrophic orthopaedic injuries sustained and its surgeons are treating serious wounds and complex injuries.

Al-Ahli Arab Hospital was already facing challenging circumstances, in part due to an annual funding cut of $65million by the United States of America to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA). UNRWA are now only able to provide a quarter of their standard reimbursement to the hospital for patients treated.

In addition, power cuts across the Strip has required the use of a 400kw generator for 16 hours a day, at the cost of $90 per hour to the hospital.

The hospital is now looking for assistance to provide urgent medical care, configure an extra emergency wing and add additional hospital beds.

The Anglican Alliance works to raise humanitarian support for the local Church from Anglicans and partners around the world. Aid for the al-Ahli Arab Hospital, will be focussed on helping to provide humanitarian relief, emergency healthcare work,  psycho-social support, and the fuel to allow this work to happen. Please see below for details as to how you can support their work.

How you can help

Please keep the people of Gaza, those affected by the violence, and the staff of al-Ahli Arab Hospital in your prayers at this time, and pray for peace, with justice, in the Holy Land.

You can donate directly to the Diocese of Jerusalem via the banking details here, supporting al-Ahli Arab hospital.

Anglican and Episcopalian agencies and groups throughout the Anglican Communion are long-time supporters of al-Ahli Arab Hospital and are already responding to the need. Some have launched specific appeals for the al-Ahli Hospital.

You can read more about how to donate to Anglican and Episcopalian appeals via the following links:

Episcopal Relief & Development, international disaster response

Anglican Board of Mission (Australia)

Anglican Overseas Aid (Australia) donate to hospital appeal

Primates World Relief and Development Fund, emergency fund

The American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem (AFEDJ)

Embrace the Middle East 

Church Mission Society  “Since it was founded by Church Mission Society in 1882, Al-Ahli Hospital has been a beacon of physical healing and spiritual hope in a place where both things are often so hard to find. We know that its continuing faithful presence is vital, and so we pray that its needs will be met at this crucial time.” Naomi Steinberg, Head of Communications, Church Mission Society.