The Irish charity Bóthar this week launched its Easter 2024 fundraising campaign for Palestine as 2.2m people who are suffering from malnutrition are now facing famine and starvation.

Ailish O’Reilly, CEO of Bóthar, said “it is almost beyond our understanding that four out of five of all starving people the world are in Gaza, in an area the size of Kilkenny City".

In choosing Palestine as its Easter appeal the team in Bóthar reached out to agencies that work in Gaza and the West Bank.

O’Reilly went on to explain that the contact dropped for a few days.

"We found out that one of their colleagues and his child had lost their lives. These were not nameless faces on a news channel anymore. We had talked about local food systems; briefly about a hopeful future; even sowing crops; but not in any detail about the risk to their lives.

"As we watched food supply networks and farming collapse, we said that if Bóthar cannot help them grow food, then we will give it," she said.

Humanitarian aid

“The problem with talking numbers and percentages is that it conceals the human cost. In Gaza, children have lost their entire families, their homes, everything.

"They have no food, no water, many need urgent medical care. They are now completely dependent on humanitarian aid to survive. Agencies in Palestine tell us that the daily reality of children in Gaza has a new acronym: WCNSF - wounded child, no surviving family.”

Bóthar is asking the public for donations to provide immediate humanitarian aid. Donations will be used to provide immediate humanitarian aid through officially recognised UN channels.

Donations for emergency aid can be made by phone on 1800 26 84 63 or online at Cheques or postal orders may be sent to Bóthar, Regus Castletroy, Business Reply, Limerick, V94 Y6FD.