Gift of the Givers Medical Team in Gaza
The South African spirit of Ubuntu is incredible. It didn't even take 3 hours and we had 75 confirmed medical volunteers who responded to our request for an Emergency Medical Mission to Gaza. Trauma surgeons, anaesthetists, emergency medicine specialists, theatre nurses, paramedics and a range of diverse specialists responded to the call with enthusiasm. The danger, the risk to life and limb was not an issue. They want to assist and so to do tons of non-medical people who want to go to do anything just to help.
The horrendous death toll among civilians, many being women and children, the gruesome injuries, the psychological and emotional trauma and the massive destruction through wave upon wave of attacks with sophisticated weapons has result in a groundswell support for Gaza victims both morally and financially.
Our specialised medical equipment, medicines and general medical supplies are ready. Gift of the Givers delivered aid inside Gaza within 12 hours of the bombing commencing on 8 July 2014. These were medical supplies purchased inside Gaza. On 9 July food items were purchased and distributed to needy families but supplies are not readily available inside Gaza and have to be accessed outside the Palestinian territories. With the Rafah border being closed this presents a major obstacle for efficient and targeted aid delivery. Oxygen, anaesthetic vaporisers, medical equipment, together with medical teams and food are an absolute priority for now.
The Egyptian Ambassador, Mr Sherif Naguip, has granted us an open invite to discuss our needs. Our priority is the safe passage from Cairo to Rafah and the opening of the border to transit through with all the essentials. Our representative in Egypt is also engaging the Egyptian authorities directly in Cairo. We are hopeful that the Egyptian government will accede to our request on humanitarian grounds.
Gift of the Givers responded with medical teams and supplies to the Gaza War in 2008-9.