Crisis at Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza – Diocese of Jerusalem sounds urgent call for support

American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem
Posted Oct 14, 2023

The Israel-Hamas War continues to claim thousands of casualties on both sides; Gaza now Ground Zero for Humanitarian Catastrophe

October 13, 2023–American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem (AFEDJ), in partnership with Al-Ahli Arab Hospital and the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem, sound an urgent call for support to ensure Christian-led Ahli Hospital may continue to mount the emergency response necessary to meet the needs of Gaza’s many wounded civilians, today and beyond, whose numbers have topped 6,000 at the time of this writing.

The recent conflict between Hamas and Israel has led to a surge in tension and violence, with both sides experiencing increased hostilities, military exchanges, and thousands of lives lost, resulting in widespread concerns for the safety and well-being of individuals and communities in Gaza and Israel. Hospital Director Suhaila Tarazi has remained in communication with AFEDJ, and continues to deliver heartbreaking updates from Ahli Hospital as she is able. At the time of this writing, she has shared with AFEDJ that the situation on the ground in Gaza is catastrophic and deteriorating rapidly. The region’s entire population is being deprived of electricity, water, fuel supplies, food, medicine, and safe shelter.

According to the United Nations, heavy shelling in Gaza since October 7 has left 423,000 inhabitants displaced, their homes reduced to rubble. Displaced community members are using the Ahli Hospital and the United Nation Relief and Work Agency’s (UNRWA) schools as a shelter, though there are no truly safe locations currently in Gaza. Three staff members of Ahli Hospital have lost their homes during the bombardment of the Al Rimal area – among them, Ahli’s Medical Director, Dr. Maher Ayyad. Thankfully, Dr. Ayyad and his two colleagues were at the hospital at the time of the residential bombardment and remain uninjured.

“At this stage, our only hope is in God for a miracle in the midst of this scenery of death.” -Suhaila Tarazi, Director of Ahli Hospital

Ahli’s doctors and nurses continue to work non-stop, persevering in impossible conditions to serve Gaza’s 2.3 million Palestinians civilians (1.1 million of them children) caught in the crossfire of the war between Hamas and Israel – the maimed, burned, and injured. Every moment is critical. They’ve had to appoint extra staff (doctors, nurses, psychosocial support workers, and technicians), open many more beds, and increase ICU capacity despite dwindling resources. The ongoing crisis demands Ahli’s critical attention and your generous support, as all patients during war are treated at no cost. Humanitarian first, Gaza’s only independent, Christian-led medical facility treats all people 24/7, regardless of gender, race, or religion.

Destroyed home of Ahli Hospital Medical Director, Dr. Maher Ayyad, post-aerial strike of the Al Rimal area of Gaza.

“Many necessary medicines at the hospital are at a zero balance,” lamented Ahli Director Suhaila Tarazi. “The hospital wards at Ahli are full with injured patients. We are trying to help as much as we can. God willing, the State of Israel will open a humanitarian corridor and allow us to save the lives of the innocent. Please keep us in your prayers.”

The humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza is becoming increasingly desperate as ongoing, unrelenting attacks continue to cripple hospitals, refugee camps, and shelters. Israel’s order to relocate the 1.1 million people from north to south Gaza, which includes the members of the Gaza’s Christian communities and Ahli Hospital (now also doubling as refuge for the many displaced), will only deepen this crisis, particularly for the many wounded on life support / ventilators who will not survive the evacuation.

Please give generously in support of this important humanitarian mission and help Ahli Hospital continue to keep their doors open 24/7 in response to this horrific humanitarian crisis.

Your generosity embodies the spirit of compassion and solidarity, demonstrating that even in times of strife, humanity’s collective desire for peace and well-being shines brightly. Donations of any amount allow Ahli Hospital to extend their capacity to treat as many people as they can throughout this crisis.

Secure online donations to support Ahli Hospital may be made at www.afedj.org/give/give-online or by check to AFEDJ, 25 Old Kings Highway North, Suite 13, Darien, CT 06820.

AFEDJ ensures that 100% of designated funds go directly to the specified institution.

ABOUT AFEDJ

Founded in 1988 at the time of the first Intifada, American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem (AFEDJ) is dedicated to raising financial support for the diocese’s humanitarian ministries – schools, hospitals, and centers for children with disabilities – in Palestine, Israel, Jordan, and Lebanon and raising awareness about these powerful examples of Christian Witness in the Holy Land. A nonpolitical, nonsectarian 501(c)3 organization, AFEDJ’s mission is to transform the lives of vulnerable and displaced people in the region. The values of equity, justice, and respect for the dignity of all are at the heart of their efforts. Learn more at www.afedj.org

Press Contact: Diana Branton, Director of Communications | American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem | dbranton@afedj.org