Help SAMS Rush Aid to Civilians

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    Update from the Field: Many thanks to all who have supported SAMS' relief efforts in Gaza.  Here is what your donation is helping SAMS accomplish:

    We partnered with the Palestinian American Medical Association (PAMA) to deliver $50,000 worth of emergency medical supplies to Gaza in the early days of the conflict (October 12, 2023).

    We coordinated with Palestine Children’s Relief Fund (PCRF) to provide $25,000 worth of emergency humanitarian aid, including food, water and hygiene kits to civilians in Gaza.

    We allocated $100,000 for the procurement and delivery of medications and supplies to Gaza via designated flights from Jordan, in collaboration with American Near East Refugee Aid (ANERA)

    We partnered with the Mersal Foundation to deliver $50,000 worth of medical supplies from Egypt.

    SAMS leadership traveled to Cairo and attended meetings with the representatives from the World Food Programme (WFP), the World Health Organization (WHO), the Egyptian Red Crescent, selected embassies, and local organizations working under the Egyptian National Alliance, the main Egyptian body responsible for relief coordination.

    We contributed $100,000 in emergency financial assistance to 135 medical students from Gaza studying in Turkey and left with no means of support.

    We worked with United Palestinian Appeal (UPA) to deliver $100,000 worth of food and clothing to internally displaced families (December 2023 - February 2024). These food parcels helped meet the nutrition needs of 6,327 people and clothing packages benefited 2,850 individuals.We coordinated with UPA to distribute 1,542 food parcels during the month of Ramadan in Mawasi Khan Younis and worked to distribute 1,050 hot meals in Ramadan 2024.We joined the Palestinian Medical Association (PAMA) and the Jordanian American Physicians Association (JAPA) to launch a March 2024 medical mission team of 10 doctors, and nurses who performed 300 consultations and 50 complex surgeries in Gaza over a two-week period.

    SAMS doctors provided specialized care in trauma surgery, vascular surgery, and ENT/Facial reconstruction. Teams brought over 70 bags of supplies & medications.We partnered with PAMA to launch a second medical mission to Gaza in April and May 2024 to provide urgently-needed medical services, while also hand-carrying critical medical supplies.

    We established partnership with Egyptian organizations active in Gaza Response to support local procurement and transportation of medical supplies to Gaza

    We planned capacity building programs for local healthcare workers through collaborations with sister organizations like PAMA, with the aim to enhance skills in emergency care and trauma management.

    We continue to advocate for the protection of civilians, healthcare workers, and healthcare facilities.

    Overview of the Crisis:

    At SAMS, we are deeply concerned by the ongoing violence and the significant loss of civilian life in the conflict between Israel and Gaza. Since the conflict in Gaza began on October 7, 2023, more than 2.3 million civilians in the besieged enclave, including 1 million children, have been subjected to relentless bombardment, forced displacement, psychological trauma, and a complete or partial blockade of humanitarian aid, including food, safe water, fuel, electricity, medicine, and other life-sustaining support.

    Since the conflict began, at least 34,443 people in Gaza have been killed, 77,643 people have been injured, 1.7 million people have been displaced from their homes, and as humanitarian conditions deteriorate by the day, 1.1 million people are projected to face catastrophic levels of food insecurity. At least 50% of water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) facilities have been damaged or destroyed and more than half of Gaza’s hospitals have been damaged and are no longer operational.

    Any hospitals in Gaza that are still functioning continue to face serious shortages of electricity/fuel, medications, medical equipment, food, and medical personnel, due to restrictions on aid entering and moving freely and safely around Gaza, significantly compromising the provision of essential healthcare and leaving doctors to perform amputations and other complex surgeries without anesthesia and other essential medical supplies.  

    More than six months of hostilities have had a devastating toll on Gaza’s children. "Nearly 26,000 children – or just over two percent of Gaza’s child population - have been killed or injured in Gaza in six months of a war which has decimated the health system and severed access to education,” according to Save the Children. Beyond the long-lasting psychological trauma, injured children will suffer life-long physical harm; in December 2023, UNICEF estimated that at least 1,000 children have had one or both legs amputated.

    Children are also disproportionately impacted by food insecurity, with Palestinians in Gaza now constituting some 80% of all people facing famine worldwide. The situation is particularly severe in northern Gaza, where some 50,400 children under the age of five are acutely malnourished and 31% of children under two suffer from severe wasting, according to the Nutrition Cluster. Recently, Oxfam also estimated that the population in northern Gaza has been forced to survive on an average of 245 calories a day since January. As of 1 April, MoH in Gaza reports that 28 children have died due to malnutrition and dehydration. UNICEF, the UN Children’s Fund, estimates that at least 17,000 children are unaccompanied or separated from their parents, and almost all of Gaza’s 1 million children are in need of mental health and psychosocial support.

    It is estimated that at least 60% of Gaza's housing units have been destroyed and significant damage has been inflicted upon critical civilian infrastructure, including water, sanitation and other essential services, affecting people's ability to maintain their dignity, health, and basic living standards. According to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), approximately 1.7 million people in Gaza or 75% of the population - have been forced to flee the intense bombing with just the clothes on their back. Many families have been displaced multiple times. Due to the ongoing escalation, mass displacement, and restricted access to incoming aid, the humanitarian situation in Gaza is deteriorating at an alarming rate.

    IDPs across Gaza continue to face deteriorating humanitarian conditions amid acute shortages of safe areas, shelters, clean water, food, and medicine. As of  February 5th, UNRWA estimates that some 75% of Gaza’s population (1.7 million out of 2.3 million people) are displaced, the majority situated in Rafah governorate.Per OCHA reports, between October 21st, 2023 and January 25th, 2024, an average of 21 truckloads per day of humanitarian supplies and fuel entered Gaza, compared with a daily average of 500 truckloads per day entering Gaza before October 7th. In addition to the extremely limited aid deliveries permitted to enter Gaza, humanitarian operations are facing increasing operational challenges due to intensified hostilities, insecurity, blocked roads, scarcity of fuel, and extremely limited communicationsMore than six months into the conflict, the scarcity of food and water has left many struggling to survive, particularly pregnant women, new mothers, newborns, and children.According to the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC), 2.2 million people in Gaza are facing crisis levels or worse risk of food insecurity, 1.17 million are facing emergency levels and 500,0000 are facing catastrophic levels of food insecurity. Tragically, at least 17 children in Gaza have died from malnutrition and an estimated 16% of children under the age of 2 are suffering from acute malnutrition in northern Gaza. The healthcare situation is beyond catastrophic. According to the MoH, only 11 out of Gaza’s 36 hospitals are partially functional: six in the south and five in the north. Those in the north have been offering maternity, trauma, and emergency care services. However, they face challenges such as a shortage of medical staff, including specialized surgeons, neurosurgeons, and intensive care staff, as well as a lack of medical supplies such as anesthesia, antibiotics, pain relief medicines, and external fixators. Additionally, they have occupancy rates are reaching 206% in inpatient departments and 250% in intensive care units.
    Gaza is also facing the risk of an outbreak of deadly infectious diseases like cholera, because water and sanitation services have broken down, and supplies of clean potable water are dwindling for its population of 2.3 million people. The impact on children is severe, as they are more susceptible to dehydration, diarrhea, disease, and malnutrition. Concerns of waterborne diseases such as cholera and chronic diarrhea are particularly heightened given the lack of safe water, especially following the seasonal rains and flooding.

    In the wake of this humanitarian crisis, SAMS is partnering with the United Palestine Appeal (UPA), the Palestinian American Medical Association (PAMA), the Palestine Children's Relief Fund (PCRF), and other NGOs to address the urgent medical and humanitarian needs of civilians.

    Today, we ask for you to join SAMS' relief efforts. Please help us deliver life-saving medical relief and vital humanitarian aid to civilians in Gaza. Your tax-deductible gift will help us rush urgently-needed food, clothing, and medical support to families and children in Gaza.

    Please mail your donation to:      

    Syrian American Medical Society Foundation
    PO Box 34115                                           
    Washington, DC  20043
    *Please include the purpose of your gift. 
    To donate via a Donor Advised Fund (DAF), such as Fidelity Charitable, please contact your DAF administrator directly and request that your gift be made to the Syrian American Medical Society Foundation, Tax ID 16-1717058, and include the purpose of your gift. Thank you!

    The Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS) Foundation is a 501(c)(3) global medical relief organization that is working on the front lines of crisis relief in Syria and beyond to alleviate suffering and save lives. TAX ID 16-1717058. Learn more here:  www.sams-usa.net For every dollar donated in 2023, 93 cents went directly into relief programs.

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