An Update on our Crowdfunding Campaign to Support Journalists in Gaza - A Letter from ARIJ Director General, Rawan Damen

April 2, 2024

We would like to express our sincere appreciation for your generous support for our Palestinian colleagues, the journalists in Gaza. Your recent contribution to our campaign, ‘The Coverage Must Continue,’ made a tangible difference in helping Palestinian journalists in Gaza capture and share images, videos and stories out of the besieged strip at a time when foreign journalists are still not being allowed into Gaza. It also allowed the Palestinian journalists to continue earning a living and supporting their families amid astronomically inflated prices and shortages of food and supplies. 

We wanted to take a moment to express our deepest appreciation for your commitment to supporting Palestinian journalists.

With your help, we so far managed to support over 90 journalists with equipment they needed to resume or continue working, including cameras, lenses, phones, laptops, power banks and microphones. The donations were also used to set up common working areas and equip them with solar power charging stations, Internet, tables, chairs and extension cords as well as provide journalists with eSIMs. Through the emergency assistance program, we also provided humanitarian assistance to journalists in need, including tents, mattresses, covers, clothes, food and care packages for female journalists. 

We would like to thank our local Palestinian partners in Gaza and the local volunteers. Without their passionate work, this essential support to the journalists would not have been possible.

Your generosity has already made a significant impact. But our journey is far from over. The situation is getting worse by the day, as you can see in the news. Gaza’s journalists continue to cover this tragedy, while being a part of it. We have a lot more need for assistance than we have funds. Please donate again if you are able to do so. And help us spread the word about the campaign so journalists in Gaza can continue their courageous work under these extraordinary circumstances. 

Please share our campaign page. Every contribution, big or small, has the power to make a meaningful difference.

We have consent from one of the journalists in Gaza, Ruwaida Amer, to share her story.

My Grandfather Hated Wars 

Ruwaida Amer – Freelance Reporter 

 “I am a 32-year-old freelance Palestinian journalist. I was eight when I first became interested in journalism. The Israeli army had demolished our home and I watched the journalists as they moved around the scene. I decided I want to be a journalist to cover people’s stories. I started writing when I was 17 but I was also interested in education, in the child’s cognitive development. I became a journalist and a schoolteacher. I love both my professions. They have formed who I am. I love my students and miss them. Some of them have been killed in this war and my school was destroyed.

 I’ve been a witness to more than one massacre, to the mass murder of Palestinians in Gaza. Entire neighborhoods pulverized, entire families eradicated, silenced by Israeli weapons. In one devastating blow, a family I know well—once vibrant with life—was extinguished. Ninety souls lost. 

 January 2024 marked two years since my grandfather’s passing. January 2024 is when the Israeli army desecrated his grave. There’s no grave for us to visit now. My grandfather always hated wars.

 As a journalist in Gaza now, there’s no safety and no protection. While some organizations care about journalists, they can’t protect us. The toll on our community is profound. Israel killed over 100 journalists. There’s no power to charge our devices, no Internet to continue our work. It’s hard to find food and water. Gaza has been cut off into various parts now separated from each other. It’s hard to reach family and friends. Danger lurks at every corner. Life has become exhausting. The hardest part is the fear of what’s next. Every night is more difficult than the one before. I feel a heavy burden on my chest. I am barely able to breathe.”