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People cycle past destroyed buildings in Gaza (CRS)

Caritas Australia has shared an update from its partners in Gaza, with workers and the people they are helping describing sobering stories from the war-torn region. 

Since the outbreak of violence in Gaza, after the October 7 attack in Israel by Hamas, close to 32,000 Palestinians have lost their life in the small enclave, with over 1.4 million Palestinians pushed into the Rafah governorate, which has since come under fire.

In an update released yesterday, Caritas Australia said its partners in the region had provided multi-purpose cash assistance to more than 127,000 people, emergency shelter for more than 1500 people and bedding supplies to more than 17,000 people. 

Working with the World Food Programme, food parcels have been distributed to more than 22,000 families. 

Caritas Australis said the conflict is devastating families, with more than half of the population of Gaza aged under 15 years old.

“The only thing we own now is ourselves. We lost all our money. We need food, money, and shelter even if it is only temporary,” one Gaza family said.

Another said, “All our plans and hopes of raising our children in a healthy manner are now shattered.”

The employees of Caritas partners in Gaza have spent months balancing being victims of the conflict and humanitarian workers responding to an emergency. All 45 of these workers have been displaced, many having moved multiple times.

One reflected on the scale of the suffering, stating that: “The sheer brutality of this war has left no corner untouched, and the streets echo with the cries of those who have lost their loved ones. In this humanitarian crisis, the stories streaming from Gaza show suffering beyond comprehension.” 

Another Caritas colleague gave a poignant lesson in gratitude, saying: “The most important lesson I learned from this harsh experience is to thank God for the simplest things that I had before the war. My message for people is to love the life that you live. Don’t miss an opportunity to live with your friends, family and children. Sit in every corner of your house and savour all of the details. Be happy and excited when you go to your work.”

Details: Caritas Australia’s Gaza Appeal


The love of life and thanks to God is the basis of everything says a Caritas Australia colleague in Gaza (Caritas Australia)