Raising funds for a delegation to Gaza and the supply of solar powered lighting units to support vital educational activity.
About the project
The Aberdeen branch of SPSC (Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign) is planning a delegation to Gaza in October this year. In addition to being a show of solidarity with the besieged Gazans, the delegation aims to defy the illegal Israeli blockade of the Strip to forge closer links with Palestinian civil society and networks (e.g. trade unions, health care, academia) - all the more important given the deliberate devastation caused by last year’s brutal Israeli assault on the Strip. In addition to causing the deaths of 2205 Palestinians (including 503 children), 14 000 housing units were destroyed during the 51 days of bombing, and half a million people were displaced, with 108 000 still homeless. This atrocity also exacerbated the already desperate power situation in Gaza, stemming from 2006 when Gaza’s only power station and its power transmission lines were severely damaged by Israeli air strikes. The plant was targeted again in 2014, and the situation is compounded by the inhumane Israeli blockade on the Strip and restrictions on the import of industrial diesel. Rafat Abu-Shaban, a Palestinian activist living in Gaza, reports:"The current power crisis in the Gaza strip is at an all-time high, with cuts ranging from 12-18 hours daily and impacting the lives of 1.8 million people. This has been affecting basic services such as water supply, sanitation, health and education. Since the end of the latest Israeli massacre on Gaza, life has become increasingly difficult with a tightened siege that has blocked basic goods, including fuel used to run emergency generators, while aid and reconstruction efforts are paralyzed as a result of funding shortage coupled with the ongoing Israeli blockade" At the same time Scottish companies such as Wood Group are building power stations in Israel, powering illegal Israeli settlements and key state institutions such as the Israeli Ministry of Defence." For more information on Wood Group’s involvement in Israel visit: http://woodgroup.scottishpsc.org.uk/
Working in cooperation with our partners in Gaza, one of the main objectives of the delegation is to raise awareness of how this energy apartheid and the recent massacre in Gaza have impacted on the rights of Gazans to access education as well as other vital services.
As part of this we are raising funds for solar-powered lamps and charging units, which we aim to deliver to Gazan university students who receive scholarships from MECA (Middle Eastern Children’s Alliance). Home solar units will enable them to continue their studies as well as helping meet the daily power needs of their families.
We have planned a series of events to raise awareness and funds. Please join in these us if you can, or use this page to donate.
The first of these is a sponsored walk: on Saturday 13th June, we will walk the 40 kilometre (25 mile) length of the Gaza Strip along the Aberdeenshire coastline. We will meet in the Union Square Bus Station on the 13th of June to catch the 06.50 bus to Portlethen and commence the walk along the coastal path back up to Aberdeen. We will then walk around the harbour and along the sea front to the Bridge of Don before walking along the beach to finish at Newburgh. If you can’t take part in the whole walk, you could join the “Solidarity Section” along the Aberdeen Beach Boulevard. If you would like to take part in the whole walk or the Solidarity Stretch, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Further events planned for the summer are a pub quiz in the Blue Lamp pub on Gallowgate, Aberdeen on Friday 24th July, a feast of Palestinian food and a ceilidh. Details of these events will be announced.