Prepared by OCHA on behalf of the Humanitarian Country Team
January 2014 – December 2014
of total population
estimated number of people in need of humanitarian aid
of total population
people targeted for humanitarian aid in this plan
Key categories of people in need:
Source: Food Security Sector extrapolated figures from SEFSec 2012
USD 390 million
Enhance the protection of populations in Gaza, Area C, the Seam Zone and East Jerusalem by promoting respect for international humanitarian and human rights law; preventing or mitigating the impact of violations; improving equitable access to essential services; and ensuring the effective integration of protection considerations in service provision interventions.*
Help improve the food security and access to livelihoods of vulnerable communities in the oPt, with particular focus on Gaza, Area C, the Seam Zone and East Jerusalem by improving economic access to food.
Protection:Provision of legal assistance, monitoring and documentation, advocacy, child protection, psychosocial support, protective presence, emergency material and cash assistance and, in Gaza specifically, improved management of explosive hazards. Facilitate access to essential services through rehabilitation of schools, kindergartens and safe spaces; improving access to healthcare; facilitation of water access to communities at high risk of displacement and addressing the critical fuel shortage in Gaza.
Food Security: meeting urgent food needs and maintaining regular food or cash assistance programmes; post-90 day response to demolitions;1 livelihoods support to farmers, herders and fishers dealing with access restrictions.
Strategic objectives 1
Priority actions 1
People in need and targeted 4
Planning assumptions 5
Explanation of the strategy 7
Scope of the strategy 8
Cross-cutting and context-specific issues 8
Assessment planning 9
Constraints and how the HCT and clusters will address them 9
Response monitoring 10
Improving quality of monitoring and reporting by strengthening coordination systems to inform strategic planning 11
Strengthening coherence between the Strategic Response Plan and development frameworks and national priorities 11
Strategic objectives and indicators 12
Cluster plans 14
COORDINATION AND SUPPORT SERVICES 14
FOOD SECURITY 28
HEALTH AND NUTRITION 33
WASH – WATER, SANITATION AND HYGIENE 44
Outcome Level Indicators and Targets 46
Table I: Requirements per cluster 51
Table II: Requirements per priority level 51
Table III: Requirements per organization 52
Table IV: List of Appeal projects (grouped by cluster) 55
Table V: Requirements per location 63
Table VI: Requirements per gender marker score 64
People in need and targeted
Overall Population: 4.42 million
Of the 4.42 million Palestinians living under Israeli occupation, 2.72 million live in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and 1.7 million live in the Gaza Strip.2 Approximately 2.18 million are men, while 2.11 million are women.3 Around half of the population is under 15 years and the average annual population growth rate is 2.9 percent (with variations between the West Bank and the Gaza Strip), one of the highest in the region.4 The population of registered refugees numbers approximately 2.2 million, constituting 33 percent of the population in the West Bank and over 76 percent of the population in Gaza. Twenty-four percent of the West Bank refugee population lives in 19 refugee camps, and in Gaza 43 percent of refugees live in eight refugee camps.5
Most-affected groups: oPt-wide: refugees, food-insecure, displaced people and those at risk of displacement; children and adolescents, persons with disabilities, and older people.
In the Gaza Strip: farmers working in or with land in the Access Restricted Areas (ARA), and others that are residing in or in the vicinity of the ARA, fishermen, refugees, unemployed youth and the chronic poor.
In the West Bank: herders and Bedouin communities in Area C, farmers with land located between the Barrier and the Green line, residents in the H2 area of Hebron, and camp-based refugees.6
Particular groups are vulnerable to the effects of the crisis in different ways. While the risk of forced displacement affects communities across the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, communities at heightened risk include some 11,000 Palestinians living in areas surrounded by or isolated by the Barrier; 2,300 predominantly refugee Bedouin and herders in the Jerusalem periphery such as in the “Maale Adumim / E1 bubble”; some 1,000 East Jerusalem Palestinians in the Al-Bustan area of Silwan; Palestine refugees living in Sheikh Jarrah; Palestinians living in the H2 area in Hebron; and the 86 Palestinian communities living in, or close by, Israeli-declared closed military zones or “firing zones” (including 1300 people in Masafer Yatta and residents of the north Jordan Valley)7. The vulnerabilities of these communities relate to a number of factors including restrictions on freedom of movement, including access to agricultural land, access to basic services and the risk of demolition of homes and property.
In addition, there are 110 communities in the West Bank with a combined population of over 315,000 Palestinians who are vulnerable to settler violence – such as the six communities located close to Yitzhar settlement (Nablus governorate), communities near Bracha settlement (Nablus governorate), Tel Rumeida, Kiryat Arba and Ma’on settlements (Hebron governorate) and Beit El settlement and Shilo outpost area (Ramallah governorate). 135,000 Palestinians are considered at high risk.8 Palestinians living in refugee camps and in communities where weekly demonstrations take place are at particular risk of violence in the context of regular clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces and to Israeli search and arrest operations. In 2013, the governorates with the highest prevalence of injuries caused by Israeli security forces were Hebron, Ramallah, Jerusalem and Bethlehem. In Hebron governorate, there has been a more than four-fold increase in injuries so far in 2013, compared to the same period in 2012.9
In the Gaza Strip, those living in, or in the vicinity of the ARA on land (areas located close to the fence with Israel) are particularly exposed to threats to their life as a result of measures taken by Israel to enforce restrictions on access to these areas. Families living in, or individuals working in, areas near the fence in the north (east of Jabalia, Beit Hanoun and Beit Lahia) and middle area (around al -Burej, Deir-El-Balah) are at greatest risk.10
Food insecure families
Food insecure families in oPt tipcially have large household size, high percentage with poor and borderline food consumption, elevated unemployment rates and reliance on food assistance. These families also lack the quality and diversity of jobs and income sources.
Children and adolescents
Conflict-related and settler violence have a serious physical and psychological impact on children and adolescents. Between 1 January and 30 September 2013 the monthly average of children injured in the West Bank by Israeli Security Forces was 118 - more than double the monthly average of 2012 (56) and four times the average for 2011 (37),11 while in Gaza, children constitute the overwhelming majority of victims of ERWs. In the West Bank, arrest and ill-treatment of children (predominantly boys) in Israeli military detention also affects their psychosocial development. - a 2013 UNICEF report found that “ill-treatment of Palestinian children in the Israeli military detention system appears to be widespread, systematic and institutionalized”.12 The monthly average for 2013 shows that 215 children per month were in Israeli military custody, compared to 196 per month in 2012 (a 9.7 percent increase).
Children account for half of those displaced in the oPt, which results in psychosocial distress and negative coping mechanisms such as child labour and early marriage of girls, while access to services such as education is hampered by protection risks including attacks by settlers on school routes and damage/destruction of school infrastructure. Rising unemployment and poverty moreover, has resulted in increasing child labour. Adolescents, who make up one third of the population, are subject not only to the hardship of the prevailing political situation, but are also economically and socially marginalized; there are limited productive outlets for their energy and they are at risk of self-destructive behavior and negative influences. School dropout rates, an alarming increase in substance abuse, social insularities, early marriage and limited access to cultural and social facilities including health and sports are among the resulting key protection concerns for the large adolescent population in the oPt.13
Coping mechanisms and resilience of children, adolescents and their caregivers are impacted by the overall situation, leading to feelings of fear and frustration among the community at large, as well as increased levels of violence in the home, at school, and in the community, hindering the enjoyment of children’s rights and preventing their normal and positive development. As a result, the psychosocial response mechanism in the Gaza Strip and West Bank requires ongoing support to ensure that it can respond to current humanitarian needs, and scale up if necessary.
Persons with disabilities
At least 6.9 percent of the Palestinian population14are living with disabilities. In this context, persons with disabilities face particular challenges in accessing livelihood opportunities as well as adequate health, education and social services. For example, limited school places and poor school infrastructure undermine access to education for children with disabilities, compounding underlying issues such as the lack of investment in specialized services to support disabilities.
In relation to older people, the main gaps identified are access to basic services, and the lack of inclusion of older people and their needs in humanitarian service delivery. As a result, many older people are dependent on support provided by their family and community, which is not always appropriate or adequate to meet their needs.15
Planning assumptions are not expected to change significantly over the course of 2014.
The protracted protection crisis is likely to continue throughout the oPt as a result of the following multiple and overlapping factors:
Fragmentation of the occupied Palestinian territory due to restrictions on freedom of movement, including movement between the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, between East Jerusalem and the rest of the West Bank, and within the West Bank; lack of access to natural resources, particularly in Area C; and the internal Palestinian divide, which negatively impact on access to services and livelihoods;
The ongoing blockade, and related long-term restrictions on the movement of people and goods, on the Gaza Strip, in addition to recent Egyptian security measures;
The existence and expansion of settlements in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, which are illegal under international law, and result in the gradual shrinkage of the space available for Palestinian use and development;
Lack of accountability for violations of international law, discriminatory application of laws and law enforcement, and failure to uphold the rights of Palestinians:
Access for humanitarian agencies to populations in the oPt continues to be undermined by bureaucratic and physical impediments imposed by the Israeli authorities and, with respect to the Gaza Strip, by the Palestinian de facto authorities
There are, however, three possible scenarios that if realised, would likely have a substantial impact on the humanitarian situation:
The resumption of peace negotiations in July 2013 has brought renewed hope of possible political resolution to the occupation. If talks are successful, there could be a positive impact on the humanitarian situation, with humanitarian vulnerabilities gradually reduced, though not entirely addressed, through 2014. Such a scenario would also likely resulted in increased emphasis on development and require a concerted exit strategy for humanitarian operations over 2015-16. However, if there is felt to be a lack of popular legitimacy to the agreement reached this could conversely, increase tensions on the ground. Delays or lack of progress in the peace talks would also likely negatively impact the humanitarian situation due to likely increases in violence on the ground across the oPt.
The situation in the Gaza Strip is extremely fragile and recurrent short escalations in hostilities (such as in November 2012) remain possible in the year ahead. Such escalations, which are often difficult to foresee, have usually resulted in a dramatic increase in needs in the short term, and impacted long-term needs as well.
The oPt is vulnerable to natural hazards, mainly earthquakes, floods, landslides, droughts and desertification – extreme weather events occurring in the West Bank and Gaza Strip would likely result in increased needs in many sectors (e.g. shelter, food security, etc) and compound existing vulnerabilities amongst many communities.
Explanation of the strategy
The goal of humanitarian assistance in 2014 continues to be stabilizing or improving access to basic services and livelihoods of the most vulnerable Palestinians in the Gaza Strip and in the West Bank, in Area C and East Jerusalem, and mitigating the protection and other concerns that exacerbate humanitarian needs. Specifically, the HPC aims to mitigate the impact of the protracted occupation and related conflict and other violence on the Palestinian civilian population, including improving food security and ensuring that Palestinians can access basic services such as health, education and WASH. The blockade of Gaza and the restrictions imposed on the legitimate crossings with Egypt, the internal Palestinian divide and the discriminatory planning and zoning policies in the West Bank prevent Palestinian authorities and humanitarian organizations from meeting needs in a sustainable way. Therefore, humanitarian assistance continues to be delivered until more robust development can take place. Given the protracted nature of the conflict in the oPt where the over-arching humanitarian needs change little from one year to another, the HCT has again decided that the analysis and strategy guiding the HPC will take a multi-year approach. The Country Strategy therefore presents a three-year plan, covering the period 2014-2016. Response planning will be annual to ensure that humanitarian responses remain as effective and appropriate as possible. The strategy for 2014 will be guided by two strategic goals, which are similar to the goals already set for the 2012-2013 CHAP:
Strategic Objective 1: Enhance the protection of populations in Gaza, Area C, the Seam Zone and East Jerusalem by promoting respect for international humanitarian and human rights law; preventing or mitigating the impact of violations; improving equitable access to essential services; and ensuring the effective integration of protection considerations in service provision interventions.
Protection concerns are at the core of the crisis in the oPt due to the lack of respect for the rights of Palestinian civilians in accordance with international humanitarian law and human rights law, and are the main drivers behind humanitarian vulnerabilities in oPt. Communities that are most at risk from the consequences of the occupation, conflict and internal Palestinian political divide, such as people living or working in or in the vicinity of the Access Restricted Areas on land and at sea in Gaza, and families affected by demolitions and settler violence in the West Bank, are often those with the worst access to essential services and whose access to land and resources is restricted. Moreover, communities that face difficulties in accessing essential services are more vulnerable to protection threats: for example, reduced access to water resources undermines the presence of already vulnerable farming communities in Area C, acting as one of several triggers for displacement.
Strategic objective 2: Help improve the food security and access to livelihoods of vulnerable communities in the oPt, with particular focus on Gaza, Area C, the Seam Zone and East Jerusalem by improving economic access to food.
The latest SEFSec data which revealed a significant increase in food insecurity in oPt from 27 percent to 34 percent indicates that tackling food security remains a key humanitarian concern in oPt and a priority action for humanitarian assistance under the HPC. During the course of 2013, in line with the recommendations of the global Food Security Cluster, agencies agreed that all food security related issues should be placed under the framework of a more inclusive Food Security Sector (FSS) (covering food, agriculture and cash for work) which will address food security in a more comprehensive and coherent way. The FSS strategy will focus on mitigating the immediate causes of food insecurity, and supporting the coping strategies of food insecure households and households vulnerable to falling into the food insecure category by improving economic access to food for affected communities. In addition to being driven by the decrease in purchasing power of Palestinian families, reduced international aid and the PA’s fiscal crisis, food insecurity in oPt is also closely related to the protection crisis, particularly the lack of access to natural resources, and restrictions on the movement of people and goods.
The Country Strategy of the HPC takes into account longer-term development strategies, particularly the Palestinian National Development Plan, which in turn is supported by the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) for 2014-16. The Country Strategy is aligned to the cycle of these development frameworks. In developing this Country Strategy, humanitarian actors have consulted with development counterparts to ensure that gaps and duplications are avoided. Delineating the boundaries between humanitarian and development action is a key challenge in oPt given the protracted nature of the situation. The development of the UNDAF has helped humanitarian and development actors in oPt to address this challenge and understanding how these two spheres of action can interact more effectively in addressing the needs of the population.
Scope of the strategy
The HPC focuses on addressing the humanitarian needs in the Gaza Strip, Area C of the West Bank and East Jerusalem where the most vulnerable populations have been identified. The communities in Areas A and B of the West Bank have fewer needs because despite restrictions, the PA has greater capacity to deliver basic services and public infrastructure in these areas16. However, vulnerable, food insecure households in Areas A and B continue to be supported by international organizations to meet their basic food needs.
The HCT has also narrowed the focus of the HPC to address two key areas: food security and protection. However, as mentioned above, these broad priorities tackle the core of humanitarian concerns in oPt. The HPC strategy does not address all the humanitarian needs of the refugees. UNRWA thus issues its own Emergency Appeal, which covers a broader scope of humanitarian needs of refugees both in terms of programmatic scope and budget requirements. The need for a separate Emergency Appeal is widely accepted and recognized by the HCT. The HPC and the UNRWA Emergency Appeal are complementary.
Cross-cutting and context-specific issues
The effectiveness of the humanitarian response in the oPt requires adequate consideration of the different realities, needs, capacities, roles and responsibilities of affected women, men, girls, and boys. The protection and food security needs present very specific gender dimensions. For example, women and girls have more care responsibilities in the home and tend to be more restricted to the home. Boys and men are more exposed to violence and men are burdened as the expected sole income provider.
This year a Gender Equality Adviser has been deployed to oPt to support the HCT efforts in ensuring that the different concerns of women, men, girls and boys are reflected in the various stages of the planning and programming process. A gender analysis framework was applied during the needs overview process which helped identify gender differentiated needs and priorities at the strategic and cluster levels. Focused technical support was provided to the clusters to ensure that their programming and project design responds to the identified gender needs. Particular attention is assigned to identification of gender sensitive indicators and sex disaggregated targets. The HPC will also be strengthened through gender mainstreaming in the planned assessments and monitoring including in the periodic reviews.
In order to support more accountability to gender equality, the HCT will use the Gender Marker in the design, implementation and monitoring of all projects associated with the HPC in line with the global IASC policy. The Gender Marker was introduced in oPt in the CAP 2011. The use of this tool for the third year will provide an opportunity to track progress with regard to performance of the HCT in regards gender mainstreaming over the past years and identify areas for improvement.