UNDP Provides Hearing Aids for the Deaf
Gaza City, October 12th, 2009 – The United Nations Development Programme has provided 181 hearing aids to poor deaf children in the Gaza Strip, it was announced today.
The hearing aids were given to the Atfaluna Society for the Deaf in Gaza City. The United Arab Emirates donated $85,000 to fund the purchase which also included batteries.
Hearing aids and their batteries were not permitted to enter the Gaza Strip by the Israeli authorities as part of their restrictions on goods entering Gaza. However, Israeli authorities have now allowed their transfer from Israel.
According to Atfaluna, three deaf people associated with the school were killed in the last two years by Israeli and internal violence because they were unable to hear the sounds of violence around them.
Mohammed Nabil al Sharif, the director of Atfaluna, said, “This is a wonderful gift for deaf people who could not afford a hearing aid. We now no longer have a waiting list for hearing aids.”
Jens Toyberg-Frandzen, UNDP’s special representative in the occupied Palestinian territory, said, “We are very happy to have played a role in providing hearing aids for young Gazas to help them interact safely with the world around them and lead productive lives.”
Atfaluna runs a school and provides a range of services, including vocational training for deaf people in the Gaza Strip.
UNDP provided the hearing aids as part of its “Rapid Support to Livelihoods and Social Services in Gaza” project.
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