Wounded Children in Gaza City: The Heartbreaking Reality of No Surviving Family
October 19, 2023 | by b1og.net
The article highlights the heartbreaking reality faced by wounded children in Gaza City who have no surviving family to care for them. As the conflict between Israel and Hamas escalates, the number of injured children being brought to hospitals has drastically increased. Plastic and reconstructive surgeon Dr. Ghassan Abu Sittah, who is currently working at Al Shifa hospital in Gaza City, describes the devastating injuries caused by air strikes, including shrapnel wounds and burns. He shares the harrowing accounts of treating children who are the sole survivors of their families, emphasizing the immense trauma and challenges they will face. The article also sheds light on the efforts of organizations like CFAB to support and reconnect orphaned children with their families. Additionally, it discusses the mental health consequences endured by young people in Gaza even before the current conflict, and how the situation is expected to worsen. The story concludes by touching upon Dr. Abu Sittah’s personal experience of being visited by British counterterrorism police and the resilience of those refusing to evacuate despite the risks.
The Reality of Wounded Children in Gaza City
The conflict in Gaza City has had devastating consequences, particularly for the most vulnerable members of society: the children. In the midst of the chaos and destruction, wounded children with no surviving family members are left in a state of utter vulnerability and despair. This article aims to shed light on this heartbreaking phenomenon and explore the numerous challenges faced by these children.
The Phenomenon of Wounded Child, No Surviving Family
One of the most heart-wrenching aspects of the conflict is the prevalence of wounded children who have lost their entire families. British doctor Ghassan Abu Sittah, who is working in Gaza City, describes it as “the phenomenon of wounded child, no surviving family.” The sheer tragedy of being a wounded child with no one left to look after them highlights the urgency of addressing this issue and providing these children with the care and support they desperately need.
The High Number of Children Among the Wounded
The impact of the conflict on children is evident in the high number of children among the wounded. Approximately 40% of the individuals being brought to hospitals in Gaza City are children, according to Dr. Abu Sittah. Blast injuries, shrapnel wounds, burns, and injuries from fallen debris are just some of the horrendous injuries these children are enduring. The scale of these injuries emphasizes the urgent need for medical assistance and specialized care for these wounded children.
The Horrendous Injuries Sustained by Children
The injuries sustained by children in Gaza City are nothing short of horrific. Dr. Abu Sittah speaks of treating children with burns, facial burns, head injuries, and other life-threatening wounds. The immediate medical attention required for such injuries is crucial to saving the lives and minimizing the long-term consequences for these children. The physical and psychological trauma they endure will necessitate extensive care and long-term rehabilitation efforts.
Cases of Children Being the Only Surviving Family Members
Perhaps one of the most tragic aspects of the conflict is the cases where children are the only surviving family members. Dr. Abu Sittah recounts treating children who were the sole survivors of their families, having been dug out of the rubble of their homes. This unimaginable loss and trauma will undoubtedly have a profound and lasting impact on these children.
The Impact on Children Who Have Lost Parents in War
Losing a parent in war is a devastating experience for any child. The loss of love, support, and guidance leaves a void that is difficult to fill. The psychological and emotional toll can be immense, often leading to long-term mental health issues such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression. The road to recovery for these children will be long and challenging, requiring comprehensive support systems and specialized therapeutic interventions.
The Massive Scale of Orphaned Children
The conflict in Gaza City has created a humanitarian crisis of orphaned children on a massive scale. The exact number of children left without family members is yet to be determined, but it is expected to be significant. Carolyn Housman, who runs an international social service network, predicts that the number of orphaned children will be “huge.” The urgent need to provide these children with safe and nurturing environments cannot be overstated.
The Use of Children for Tactical Advantage
Adding to the complexity and danger faced by children in Gaza City is the use of children for tactical advantage. Carolyn Housman highlights the unsettling reality that children are sometimes taken hostage to serve this purpose. This further exposes children to unthinkable harm and underscores the urgent need to protect them from the ongoing violence and exploitation.
Efforts to Reconnect Children with Their Families
Organizations like CFAB are working tirelessly to reconnect children who have been separated from their families due to the conflict. Through collaboration with social work teams and assessments of potential family members abroad, efforts are made to determine the best interests of the child in terms of reunification. This crucial work aims to provide these children with a sense of stability and belonging amidst the chaos and uncertainty they face.
The Fear of Being Forced Out of Gaza
For the children and families remaining in Gaza City, the fear of being forced out of their homes and becoming refugees is a constant concern. Many choose to stay in their homes despite the risks, as the alternative of displacement and uncertainty is equally daunting. The desire to preserve their Palestinian identity and avoid reliving the traumatic experiences of past displacements drives these families to cling to their homes, even in the face of imminent danger.
In conclusion, the reality of wounded children in Gaza City is a stark reminder of the devastating impact of conflict on the most vulnerable members of society. The high number of children among the wounded, the horrendous injuries sustained, and the cases of children being the only surviving family members all highlight the urgent need for intervention and support. Efforts to reconnect children with their families, protect them from exploitation, and provide them with the care they need must be prioritized. Only through collective action and humanitarian response can we hope to alleviate the suffering of these wounded children and pave the way for a more secure and peaceful future.