Reporting Period: 1 March - 31 March 2016
• During the month of March, the security situation remained tense across the State of Palestine, resulting in 34 Palestinians injured (50% children). The violence resulted in 14 Israelis injured and one soldier killed.
• Israeli authorities demolished 60 buildings, including 19 built as part of humanitarian assistance. A total of 95 Palestinians, including 40 children, were displaced.
• The number of children arrested in East Jerusalem by the Israeli Security Forces decreased, with 55 children arrested, compared to 82 children arrested in February 2016 and 73 in January.
• UNICEF, through its NGO partners, provided 6,194 children (49% girls) with psychosocial support in Gaza. Additionally, 3,155 children (50% boys) benefitted from child protection services and life skills programmes through 28 Family Centers.
• UNICEF cooperated with NGO partners in providing 2,093 adolescents with opportunities to develop their life skills and address issues related to conflict and violence.
• In March, UNICEF also ensured that additional 4,500 individuals (960 households) gained access to improved and continued access to water networks in Gaza.
• In partnership with the Ministry of Health, UNICEF continued to provide emergency health care services and supplies in Gaza and the West Bank, benefitting 40,306 mothers and new-borns.
# of affected children under 18
# of people targeted in 2016
# of children targeted in 2016
(Source: UNICEF Humanitarian Action for Children 2016)
Funds Received *
USD 7.0 million
*as of 31 March, 2016
During March 2016, violence continued across the State of Palestine, with attacks against individuals and communities across the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza.
Clashes with Israeli security forces resulted in the injury of 33 Palestinians, including 15 children. The majority of injuries were recorded during search and arrest operations, including raids into the Arab American University ofJenin, a charity in Tulkarem city, and a primary school in Tell village (Nablus), including destruction of learning facilities.
The Israeli authorities demolished 60 structures on the basis of lack of Israeli-issued building permits, including 19 which had been provided as humanitarian assistance in response to previous demolitions. As a result, 95 Palestinians, including 40 children, were displaced. The largest incident took place in Khirbet Tana (Nablus), where Israeli authorities demolished 53 structures, including 22 homes. The Humanitarian Coordinator for Palestine, Robert Piper, raised concerns about the risk of forcible transfer in the West Bank. The total number of structures demolished or confiscated since January 2016 has reached 85% of the total number demolished or confiscated in all of 2015.
On 12 March, Palestinian school teachers suspended their one-month strike following President Abbas' commitment to fully implement a 2013 trade union deal that provides a ten per cent salary increase to teachers.
On 22 March, two Palestinians stabbed and wounded an Israeli soldier in Hebron city. In response, the Israeli Forces shot one dead and wounded the second one. The UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Process, Nickolay Mladenov, condemned the "apparent extra-judicial killing". From 1 October 2015 to 24 March 2016, a total of 136 Palestinian suspected perpetrators, including 32 children, were killed by Israeli forces in response to attacks and alleged attacks against Israelis.
Following the incident of 22 March, Israeli forces banned until further notice the passage of Palestinian males between 15 and 25 years old through two nearby checkpoints controlling access to the H2 area of Hebron city. This comes in addition to other severe restrictions on Palestinian access to this area, in place since October 2015.
On 29 March, the Ministry of Health in Gaza confirmed that an infant died due to hypothermia and a sibling was found in critical condition. The child was one of 1,150 families residing in caravans providing temporary shelter to those families displaced during the July-August 2014 war.
The Egyptian-controlled Rafah Crossing was closed in both directions during the reporting period. The crossing has been closed, including for humanitarian assistance, since 24 October 2014, except for 42 days of partial openings. Authorities in Gaza indicated that around 30,000 people with urgent needs, including around 3,500 medical cases, are registered and waiting to cross.
Humanitarian leadership and coordination
UNICEF, as part of the UN Country Team, coordinates with the Palestinian Government to support its role in humanitarian response, early recovery and reconstruction. UNICEF leads the WASH cluster in close cooperation with the Palestinian Water Authority, and co-leads the Education Cluster with Save the Children, both in Gaza and at the national level. UNICEF also leads the Child Protection Working Group and affiliated groups on Mental Health and Psychosocial Services (MHPSS), and on Monitoring and Reporting of Grave Violations against children (Children and Armed Conflict reporting mechanism). UNICEF co-leads the Nutrition Working Group under the Health Cluster, in close cooperation with the Ministry of Health and WFP, in Gaza and at the national level.
UNICEF is leading Cluster transitioning in WASH and Education sectors in the West Bank, through capacity building, towards increased Government ownership and more effective coordination.
The 2016 Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP), which is part of the Global Humanitarian Overview, was launched in Gaza on 9 March 2016. The HRP appeals for US$ 571 million, of which 32 million are requested from UNICEF, for a range of interventions described in the HRP project sheets.1
Summary Analysis of Programme Response per Sector
Education and Adolescents
In the West Bank, UNICEF continued to provide protective presence and accompaniment of 4,334 children and 333 teachers, in partnership with the international NGOs (INGO) Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine (EAPPI) and Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT).
The Adolescent Development and Participation programme (ADAP) continued to support adolescents' trainings on social entrepreneurship and life skills and youth-led initiatives addressing issues of conflict, violence, and social cohesion. This was achieved in partnership with the Higher Council for Youth and Sports (HCYS), MAAN, Pal Vision, Palestine Education for Employment (PEFE) and Tamer. In March, 2,093 newly reached adolescents (43% female) have benefited from the programme.2
A youth entrepreneurship programme teaches children how to create small
businesses or develop projects to change behaviours and social norms, here
in Awarta, West Bank.
In March, the number of children arrested in East Jerusalem by the Israeli Security Forces decreased, with 55 children arrested, compared to 82 children arrested in February 2016, and 73 in January. With UNICEF support, the Palestinian Counselling Centre provided specialized therapeutic services to 57 children and 56 adults. A new website for the Wadi Hilweh information centre was launched to provide real-time data on the impact of conflict on children in East Jerusalem: http://silwanic.net/
In Gaza, 6,194 children (49% females) received psychosocial support including group and individual counseling, with support from UNICEF, the national NGO Ma'an Development Centre, the Tamer Institution for Community Education, and the Palestinian Centre for Democracy and Conflict Resolution (PCDCR). Additionally, 3,155 children (50% boys) received child protection services and engaged in life skills programmes through 28 Family Centers. Over 387 vulnerable children (221 boys and 166 girls) benefitted from case management. Awareness raising sessions for caregivers on the protection of their children and positive discipline have been organized across the Gaza Strip, for 14,876 caregivers (67% males).
Water, Sanitation and Hygiene
In Gaza, UNICEF in partnership with the Coastal Municipality Water Utility (CMWU) continued to provide safe water access to communities. In Rafah, the rehabilitation of the Jumaizat AlSabeel sewage pumping station is ongoing and a total 1,800 m of HDPE pipes have been installed. Works will be completed by mid-May, benefitting an estimated 120,000 people living in the surrounding communities. In Khan Younis, Maghazi and Dier AlBalah area, the reconstruction of three community water wells damaged in the 2014 war is ongoing. The excavation works have been completed in Maghazi and Dier AlBalah, and is being finalized in Khan Younis. Through this intervention, UNICEF and CMWU are targeting 1,800 households from all three communities.
Child Health & Nutrition
In Gaza and the West Bank, UNICEF procured and distributed essential paediatric drugs, including neonate screening kits, to seven national and paediatric hospitals, providing continuous care to 40,306 mothers and children. Since the start of 2016, UNICEF has reached over 66% of the total number of mothers and children originally targeted.
In March, 260 Health Staff and School Officers in Gaza completed the First Aid Training. Since the start of the year, 460 medical and school staff have increased their knowledge on first aid (92% against the original target of 500 individuals).
In Gaza, 16,916 mothers benefited from a comprehensive package of awareness raising activities covering breastfeeding, infant young child feeding practices, personal hygiene and communicable diseases prevention. In cooperation with the Ministry of Health, the sessions took place at community levels, including refugee camps.
As Education Cluster co-lead, together with Save the Children, UNICEF continued to extend its technical support in transitioning the Education Cluster functions to the Ministry of Education and Higher Education (MoEHE) in the West Bank. On 23 February, five focal points from the Education in Emergency Working Group (EiEWG) attended a training on gender mainstreaming in emergency planning organized by UN Women and the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). This contributed to further strengthening the capacity of the MoEHE staff to integrate gender in planning for Education in Emergency.
Between January and March 2016, members of the Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) Working Group and the UNICEF-led Child Protection Working Group in Gaza (CPWG) reached 45,145 children with structured/focused psychosocial support and counseling services, including 300 children with specialized mental health services.
Since the beginning of the year, 19,027 adults were reached with structured psychosocial support and counseling services, including 1,457 with specialized mental health services. 560 children (342 girls and 218 boys) and 468 adults (403 women and 65 men) benefitted from awareness raising activities on unexploded remnants of war.
In early 2016, a new arrangement for the chairing of the MHPSS Working Group was established, with the NGO Medecins du Monde acting as co-chair. The Working Group is focusing on reviewing operational procedures for response to cases of settler violence in the West Bank as well as incidents in East Jerusalem. The MHPSS WG has agreed to move forward with an initial geographic division of responsibility by actor and the identification of organizations responsible for the intervention.
The Working Group on Grave Violations against Children (WGGV), chaired by UNICEF, compiled the inputs for the 2015 Secretary General Annual Report on Children and Armed Conflict. The WGGV documented 2,247 violations, affecting over 39,712 children in 2015.3 The analysis of trends indicates that high levels of violence caused death and injury among Palestinian and Israeli children throughout 2015, and especially in the second half of the year. Increasing levels of violence, and daily clashes between Palestinians and Israeli Security Forces resulted in the death of 30 Palestinain children and injury of 1,734 children.
In Gaza, the OCHA-led IDP registration and profiling assessment team referred 550 families to the CPWG between December 2015 and January 2016, including 1,630 children. The CPWG coordinated initial assessments for all referrals through UNICEF partners, Ma'an, TAMER, PCDCR, as well as MoSA trained case managers. The CPWG partners addressed cases of separated and unaccompanied children, and psychosocial distress. To date, 128 out of 1,630 children are still receiving case management support.
In coordination with the Islamic Development Bank, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) and OCHA, the WASH Cluster distributed 420,000 liters of fuel to 80 critical WASH facilities in Gaza, including water wells, sewage/storm water pumps and mobile sewage pumps. The distribution is part of the flood emergency response. It contributed to mitigate the impact of severe shortage of electricity that around 60,000 individuals faced in Gaza during the floods in early 2016.
Within the winterization response, the WASH Cluster liaised with the Israeli Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) to facilitate the entry of seven stormwater mobile pumps into Gaza. These pumps were used by Gaza municipalities to promptly pump out stormwater to collection ponds and de-watering flooded areas. This helped up to 20,000 individuals whose houses have been flooded as result of the heavy winter storms and heavy rains.
Meeting the humanitarian and development needs of affected children and families in the State of Palestine will contribute to saving lives, reducing the suffering of the affected population and increasing resilience. The 2016 Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP), which is part of the Global Humanitarian Overview, was officially launched on 10 February 2016 in Ramallah and on 9 March in Gaza. The 2016 Humanitarian Action for Children (HAC) document was finalized and includes four additional projects (WASH and Education) which were not included in the HRP. For this reason UNICEF's total required funding in the HAC is higher than the total amount required through the HRP project sheets.
During the reporting period, USD 7 million were received against UNICEF's approved project sheets in the HRP. To date, the overall funding gap is 71%.\
UNICEF State of Palestine: http://www.unicef.org/oPt/
UNICEF State of Palestine on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/unicefstateofpalestine
UNICEF State of Palestine on Twitter: https://twitter.com/UNICEFpalestine
UNICEF Humanitarian Action for Children 2015: http://www.unicef.org/appeals/state of palestine.html
UNICEF State of Palestine
Deputy Special Representative
Email: adufay(@un icef.orci
Chief of Communications
Email : cweibel(@unicef.orq
1 To access the HRP project sheets follow the URL: https://www.ochaopt.org/hpf.aspx
2 To avoid double counting, the Situation Report provides the number of newly reached adolescents on a monthly basis. UNICEF continues to
support over 43,700 adolescents who benefitted from the Adolescent programme in 2015 (quoted figure from: UNICEF State of Palestine, Situation
Report; period: 1-31 December 2015).
3 Q1/2016 data is being compiled and verified at the time of release of this Situation Report; this information will be released in the next quarterly
4 Note: UNICEF cumulative results presented in this Situation Report feature some amendments, compared to the February Situation Report, as per review of data provided by the implementing partners and counterparts.
5 The Cluster results will be updated on a quarterly basis as agreed with the respective Clusters/Sections.
6 Final and cumulative results from the joint UNICEF-WFP e-voucher programme (as of February 2016).
7 In the West Bank, UNICEF has completed water tankering distribution at the end of February, in partnership with the NGO Gruppo di Volontariato Civile (GVC). Works to upgrade the water networks and water distribution in the water scarce areas are scheduled to start later in April-May 2016 in the West Bank.
8 The Education Cluster partners plan to provide the bulk of teaching and learning supplies during the second half of 2016, with the start of the new academic year in September.
9 Remedial classes will take place later in 2016 according to 2015/2016 school calendar and planning with the Ministry of Education.
10 Rehabilitation works in targeted neonatal care units are on-going at the time of release of the March Situation Report. Therefore, access data will be recorded later in the year.