Sunday, December 18

Year-End Appeal: Remember Gaza

Near East Cultural and Educational Foundation (NECEF),

together with

Canadian Friends of Sabeel (CFOS),

There needs to be an end suffering and oppression! Dignity must be restored, and freedom achieved!
Constantine Dabbagh, Executive Director Emeritus, NECC Gaza

Our partners in Gaza and the West Bank have all called for an end to this human manufactured humanitarian disaster in Gaza, appealing to all people of good conscience everywhere.

The situation in Gaza remains bleak. The siege continues to bring suffering to the people of Gaza on so many fronts. Humanitarian aid is blocked form entering the region. Israel's occupation has ramped up to transform Gaza into the world's largest prison, with 1.5 million inhabitants, more than half of them children. 85% of the population has no memory of freedom from before Israel;s hostile military occupation of Gaza.

Earlier this year, though your generous donations of the joint NECEF / CFOS appeal, we were able to contribute over $32,000 to the Near East Council of Churches (NECC). Our partner for emergency relief and development in Gaza continues to be NECC, the largest non-government organization in the Gaza Strip prior to the advent of the PA. All new funding coming in, through this appeal, will continue to go toward the medical clinics that the NECC supports. These mother and child clinics, located in the poorest areas of Gaza, provide care for the most vulnerable in the communities. We have brought to our government's attention the obliteration of one of these CIDA-funded clinics in Israel;s bombing of Gaza in 2009. Instead of prevailing upon Israel to replace the clinic, the Canadian government subsequently cut off all CIDA funding to Kairos Canada and therefore to the NECC.

At that time, the NECC asked us to re-direct some of our support from desparately needed aid to even more despartely needed advocacy for an end to this untenable siege and wanton destruction in Gaza. Our plans for 2012 include having the voice of Gazans heard in Canada, We therefore intend to bring a Gazan on a cross-country speaking tour. Our partner will unite with us in our advocacy and education efforts with the public, media and government, to toward terminating the siege. The voice of Gaza under siege will be heard in Canada!

Now is an opportunity to be generous in a truly meaningful gift, both with your financial support and primarily with your time and diligence in advocating locally and nationally for Canadian government action to the break the siege and end the occupation.

As the lights go out in Gaza, let us light a candle of hope here by our solidarity and generosity.

In peace,

Robert +

The Reverend Robert Assaly,

NECEF President and CFOS Chair

All funds raised from this letter will go toward NECC for their medical clinics, unless they are earmarked for the above-mentioned education visit.

All donors through NECEF will be issued a charitable tax receipt. If received by Dec 31, a tax receipt will be issued for 2011. You may donate through Canada Helps or by cheque to the following address:

7565 Newman Blvd.
P.O. Box 3067
Station LaPierre
Lasalle (Montreal), QC H8N 3H2

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

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