Appeal for children and families in Gaza

UNICEF is calling for immediate ceasefire and for sustained and unimpeded access for humanitarian assistance

03 November 2023
child sits alone on mattress in rubble
UNICEF/UNI463117/El Baba
Ahmad, 5-year-old sitting on his mattress in one of the shelter courtyards surrounded by several hundred other displaced people.

Multimedia content available to download here.

KUALA LUMPUR, 3 November 2023 – Almost a month into the escalation of hostilities, more than 400 children are killed or injured daily. Almost every child in the Gaza Strip has been exposed to deeply distressing events and trauma, marked by widespread destruction, relentless attacks, displacement, and severe shortages of essential necessities such as food, water, and medicine.

The bombardment of the Jabaliya refugee camp is the latest in a series of attacks in which children in Gaza have been killed and injured. Refugee camps, settlements for the internally displaced, and the civilians inhabiting them are all protected under international humanitarian law (IHL). Parties to conflict have an obligation to respect and protect them from attack.

“The situation in the Gaza Strip is a growing stain on our collective conscience. The rate of death and injuries of children simply staggering,” said Adele Khodr, UNICEF Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa. “Even more frightening is the fact that unless tensions are eased, and unless humanitarian aid is allowed, including food, water, medical supplies and fuel, the daily death toll will continue to rise.”

The hostilities and blockades to all supply routes have left children and families in Gaza without food, clean drinking water, electricity, medicine and safe access to hospitals. Most of the water systems are non-operational due to damage to the infrastructure, lack of fuel and access constraints.

The killing and captivity of children must stop. Children are not a target. UNICEF reiterates its urgent call to all parties to the conflict for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire, to ensure the protection of all children, and for safe and unimpeded humanitarian access to deliver lifesaving aid at scale across the Gaza Strip, according to International Humanitarian Law.

UNICEF has moved 34 trucks with emergency supplies into the Gaza Strip since 21 October, carrying medicines and medical consumable kits to Nasser Hospital for an estimated 165,000 people, as well as bottled water for 55,000 people. These supplies are in addition to the provisions already distributed through UNRWA and Ministry of Health in Gaza as well as shelters for displaced families. This is far from enough.

UNICEF estimates an urgent need for an initial RM 94.3 million (USD 20 million) to respond to lifesaving needs over the next three months. These include:

  • Emergency fuel for operating key water desalination plants and water and sanitation pumping stations located across the Gaza Strip.
  • Repairs for damaged water, sanitation and hygiene infrastructure.
  • Hygiene kits for affected families.
  • Essential medical supplies for health care services and services for newborns.
  • Micronutrient supplementation and nutrition supplies for women and children.
  • Rehabilitation of damaged schools or schools used as shelters, as well as teaching and learning materials to mitigate learning losses.
  • Psychosocial support for traumatized children and their parents.

The UNICEF Appeal for Children of Gaza Crisis receives contributions by bank transfer or online donations. Public interested in donating to the appeal can do so via:

1) Online Donation:

Donation Site (English):

Donation Site (Malay):

Donation Site (Chinese):

2) Bank transfer:


Bank: MALAYAN BANKING BERHAD / Account No: 5143 2960 2449

3) Corporates

For enquiries or corporate donation please contact:


Humanitarian Situation in Gaza

Based on the Escalation Humanitarian Situation Report No. 3 released by UNICEF State of Palestine reporting period 20 to 26 October 2023:

  • There are estimated to be over 1.4 million Internally Displaced People (IDPs) across the Gaza Strip, 629,000 of whom are hosted in 150 UNRWA Designated Emergency Shelters (DES).
  • According to the Ministry of Health (MoH) as of October 26, reportedly 2,913 children were killed in the Gaza Strip since the start of hostilities, with a further 6,168 children reportedly injured. A further 35 children have reportedly been killed in the West Bank as a result of increasing violence.
  • 221 schools have sustained damage in the Gaza Strip, representing over 40 per cent of all school buildings in the Gaza Strip. 625,000 children enrolled in school across the Gaza Strip have no access to education.

UNICEF has been working in Gaza since the 1980's. It is one of 13 United Nations agencies implementing and scaling up humanitarian interventions in response to the immediate needs of children and families caught in the conflict.

For more information about UNICEF State of Palestine, please visit:

For more information about UNICEF Humanitarian Action Appeal 2023 for State of Palestine:

UNICEF Spokespeople are available for interviews upon request.

Media contacts

Rachel Choong
Communications Officer (Media)
UNICEF Malaysia
Tel: +60122932690


UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.

For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit

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