Announcing the Start of Funding for Shelter in Gaza and Appealing for Additional Support
UNDP and the Ministry of Housing and Public Works begin assessing damages and needs in Gaza
Jerusalem, 11 September 2014 – The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) announced a USD 1 million in funds for shelter support in Gaza at a joint press conference with UNRWA and the Ministry of Public Works and Housing.
Through this funding, support will be provided to non-refugee families whose houses were damaged or destroyed in order to find alternative accommodation through rental subsidies, repair assistance and cash for work. UNDP will use its own resources amounting USD 1 million, through its Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery.
In addition, UNDP in partnership with the Ministry of Public Works and Housing and the Union of Palestinian Contractors launched a comprehensive assessment of the damages and recovery needs in Gaza following 51 days of intense military operations.
The assessment will examine physical and material damages in the housing sector across the Gaza Strip over a period of six weeks. The Assessment will provide critical information that will be included in the report submitted to the ministerial committee formed by the Government of National Consensus.
H.E. Dr Mufeed Al-Hasaina, Minister of Housing and Public Works, expressed government readiness to respond to the large magnitude of the homes destroyed in Gaza. He reiterated the Government’s willingness to coordinate and cooperate with UNDP and other UN and international organizations in order to have the destroyed houses reconstructed as soon as possible, and urged donor countries to financially contribute to the reconstruction programme. “ We thank UNDP for all the efforts exerted in the assessment process of the destroyed and damaged houses which started early this week, and hope to have the assessment process accomplished within the planned time frame of 4-6 weeks” H.E. Al-Hasaina added.
Teams fielded to examine the damages and recovery needs of the housing sector consist of 70 engineers from the Ministry of Public Works and Housing, 206 engineers appointed by Union of Palestinian Contractors, in addition to 21 UNDP engineers. The teams will use tablets with a GIS system in order to store information in a shared database that will ease the planning and development process and avoid duplication.
“The scope of work is immense and we have a responsibility to help the people of Gaza rebuild their lives,” said Frode Mauring, UNDP Special Representative of the Administrator. “As a leading development agency with a long history of building essential infrastructure, we feel it necessary to take stock of the extent of damage incurred in order to set the basis for sustainable recovery and longer term development” he added.
Despite the challenge presented by the humanitarian situation, UNDP is mobilizing its resources to assess the damages and needs that will lay the foundation for reconstruction and development. UNDP will also be responding by enhancing livelihoods through emergency employment, rubble removal, repairing essential infrastructure, restoring solid waste services and providing institutional support towards a unified civil service and institutional harmonization.
It is worth noting that the recent conflict has resulted in the death of more than 2,130 Palestinians including over 1,400 civilians. By the end of August, over 18,000 housing units have been destroyed or severely damaged, leaving approximately 108,000 people homeless.
For further information, please contact:
Dania Darwish, Communications Specialist, Tel. +972-2-6268229 – e-mail: email@example.com. For more information on UNDP/PAPP see http://www.ps.undp.org.