Islamic Relief USA and Anera to Deliver Millions of Meals in Gaza as Humanitarian Aid Distribution in Gaza Resumes

Call for Permanent Ceasefire to Reduce Human Suffering


WASHINGTON, D.C.As Palestinians in Gaza mark the end of Ramadan and commemorate the Eid in the midst of ongoing escalation and humanitarian catastrophe, Islamic Relief USA and Anera are announcing they are resuming ground operations to deliver millions of meals and curb an increasingly growing humanitarian crisis. To help get aid to as many people as possible, IRUSA will commit an additional $6 million.

“Islamic Relief USA and Anera are committed to the people of Gaza, who have suffered tremendously and brutally these past several months from Israel’s ongoing escalation,” said Ahmed Shehata, Chief Executive Officer at IRUSA. “The world community cannot, in good conscience, stand by and witness the horrific plights on the ground, including mass starvation, crumbling health facilities and services, destroyed infrastructure, and widespread suffering in general that are captured each day by the media. A permanent, non-conditional ceasefire must be put in place in order for organizations to operate effectively and at maximum capacity.”

“The need to continue and expand aid in Gaza has never been more urgent. We know that northern Gaza may already be in the midst of a famine, or will be soon without immediate action. To be forced to pause our operations in such circumstances was agonizing,” said Sean Carroll, Anera’s President & CEO. “We are resuming work as swiftly and fully as possible given the extreme dangers humanitarian workers have faced.”

Islamic Relief USA has committed—or is in the process of committing — $25 million in emergency aid to our partners on the ground in Gaza, with Anera being one of our largest. The aid has helped in the implementation of numerous life-saving projects and programs intended to reduce hunger, provide clean water, medical care, improve overall sanitation, psychosocial care, and assist internally displaced people. However, the scale of the loss and suffering is immense, and without greater support from the world community to call for a ceasefire, assistance from humanitarian organizations will have minimal impact. 

Nonetheless, the work must continue. Here are some of the grim statistics, resulting from the bombardment that started in October.

*More than 33,000 people have been killed including over 14,000 children and more than 9,400 women 

*Approximately 75% of Gaza’s population of 2.3 million people has been displaced. The United Nations had described the humanitarian crises resulting from Israel’s bombardment of Gaza as “beyond catastrophic.” 

*Numerous cases of malnourished children have been reported. 

Anera, which has been operating in this region for decades, was forced to suspend operations in Gaza on April 2, given the increasingly dangerous conditions posed by the bombardment, and especially after targeted airstrikes killed aid workers from World Central Kitchen, which also collaborates with the organizations. These deaths followed the killing of an Anera employee, Mousa Shawwa, and his son by an airstrike less than a month earlier.

“The threats to humanitarian workers are very personal for us at Anera. Mousa was a longstanding employee and he was killed shortly after returning from assisting with aid distributions, still wearing his Anera vest,” Carroll said. 

In the past few days, conditions on the ground have improved enough to enable Anera’s aid workers to resume operations. Still, the organizations are calling on Israel to follow international law as stipulated by the International Court of Justice, and ensure delivery of urgent humanitarian assistance and basic services be done safely. 

More than 200 aid workers have been killed since the escalation started.




Syed M. Hassan  or
(571) 421-7032 (CELL)

Steve Fake
Media Relations Officer, Anera
(202) 266.9719




Islamic Relief USA, based in Alexandria, Va., is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) humanitarian organization. Its mission is to provide relief and development in a dignified manner regardless of gender, race, or religion, and works to empower individuals in their communities and give them a voice in the world. Its programs benefit millions of people each year in more than 40 countries around the world, including in the United States.

Islamic Relief USA meets all of the Standards for Charity Accountability of the BBB Wise Giving Alliance, a national charity monitoring group affiliated with the Better Business Bureau system. Islamic Relief USA is on the U.S. government’s Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) charity list, and it is also a signatory to the code of conduct of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

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