The North Gaza governorate is one of the most impoverished governorates in the occupied Palestinian territories (oPt) and the neediest in the Gaza Strip. In comparison with the other governorates in the Gaza Strip, North Gaza’s food insecurity rate, at 60 per cent is the highest, and its unemployment rate, at 39 per cent the second highest. One of the common negative coping strategies adopted by families in North Gaza to harsh economic situation is taking kids to work instead of school, and this is the case for Issa Abu Amtsha, who had to leave his school at a young age to work and support his family.
Issa Abu Amsha is a 23 years old young man from Beit Hanoun Area on the northeast edge of the Gaza Strip, and is the breadwinner of a family of 10 members, including his mom, sisters, wife and son. Issa works almost all day in a nearby restaurant for a pittance, and can barely provide for his family.
Supporting the development of income generating activities (IGAs), which provide different and additional ways to earn money, is one way to support the Gazan families, boost farmer resilience, empower women, and increase child protection.
With support from Penny Appeal USA, Palestine Association for Education & Environmental Protection (PAEEP) has supported Issa’s family set up IGAs through providing them with a pregnant ewe with two baby lambs, a ram, in addition to providing the family with fodder to feed the animals and a barn for housing the animals and storing the fodder. Moreover, Issa has received a training on livestock farming, that was designed to equip Issa, along with a number of other farmers, with the right blend of agricultural, business and livestock skills. During the training, Issa has developed specialised knowledge of animal production techniques and best practices, and also discovered how to run an effective and profitable business.
This additional income is expected to improve the household’s situation for Issa and his family, and help Issa put money towards his son’s education so that he does not have to leave school like so many others.