Fixing Damaged Schools in Gaza

December 20, 2012 ANERA
Early Childhood Development, Education, Emergency Response, Environmental Projects, Gaza, Recovery and Reconstruction, School Infrastructure
A man and a woman place plastic sheeting on a window in a Gaza preschool. Plastic sheeting over broken windows was one of the first steps.

At the Visually Impaired Preschool, broken windows, doors and rooftops were fixed after an ANERA team checked the extent of the damage.

ANERA had received a call the school’s director saying it was “terribly chilly in the classrooms with all the broken windows and doors.” In mid-December when temperatures are the lowest of the year, preschoolers were wearing extra layers to protect themselves from the cold weather.

Ibtisam Marzouk explained, “When the bombing started, we had to leave the place and make sure the kids were delivered safely to their homes but once we returned we saw the damage and I called ANERA for help.”

The Visually Impaired preschool, which is home for some 40 blind students, was renovated as part of ANERA’s Milk for Preschoolers program, which also provided nutritious snacks to more than 140 preschools across Gaza.

40 visually impaired students attend the school that was repaired after bombings in November.

The children of the Visually Impaired preschool now have happily returned to their regular routine of learning, playing and singing inside a much warmer environment. Ahmad and Majdouline, both four years old, walked rapidly to the board to write a new letter they just added to their alphabet. The letter “I” they said confidently stands for ice-cream, though it’s not something they clamor for in wintry cold weather

Two Gaza preschool boys sit in class wearing their winter coats.

Children wore winter coats in class to keep warm before broken windows were repaired.

ANERA made the school immediately comfortable while more extensive repairs were underway by using some plastic sheeting to cover the broken windows to keep out rain and wind. ANERA then contracted with local suppliers to fully repair the windows and the doors.

The Friends Society of Visually Impaired Rehabilitation was established in 1995. The non-profit offers education, rehabilitation, social and medical services for visually impaired students. The society also offers classes in Braille for their parents.

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