More than 30 people from all over the world, including some from the East Bay, are heading to Gaza with $15,000 worth of playground equipment, school supplies and toys for children there.
The trip, the second such trek this year, is being organized by a Bay Area chapter of CodePink.
Anna Davda of Berkeley said the trip's purpose is to call attention to the needs of Gaza's children. According to the group Save the Children, children make up more than half of Gaza's population.
During the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict late last year and earlier this year, thousands of girls and boys were repeatedly exposed to violence and at least 280 children were reportedly killed, according to information from Save the Children.
The group is bringing enough supplies to build three playgrounds in parks in Gaza and also an unspecified amount of medicine for children, Davda said. Funds were collected by those going on the trip at Bay Area events, such as at a talk given by Alice Walker in Oakland last month, she said.
While schools in Gaza are open, repairs cannot be made to the 240 schools that were damaged because of a restriction on construction materials allowed in to Gaza, according to information from Save the Children. A preliminary assessment showed that more than 71,000 people have been displaced and that children have lost textbooks, notebooks, uniforms and other learning materials, according to Save the Children.