What constant power cuts means for the people of Gaza

Hussam El-Nounou runs an NGO in Gaza that deals with people suffering mental problems:

These constant and long power cuts have turned everything upside-down here. We barely get ten hours of electricity per day. To compensate, a lot of Gazans have bought small generators in order to be able to turn on their lights, televisions and computers. Anything that requires a lot of electricity however, like fridges, washing machines, boilers, and motors that pump water to higher floors in a building, are lost on us. We can’t have a daily shower and don’t get to wash our clothes very often.

The cuts also affect our social lives. Friends and relatives, tired of using the stairs when the lifts don’t work, are less likely to visit if you live on the top floor. Old people rarely go out and are affected by loneliness. Children become annoyed because they can’t watch their favourite TV programmes or play video games. The worst affected are pupils and students; during exam periods they become easily tired after straining their eyes from trying to revise in the dark evenings.

On top of that, the number of car accidents has shot up since the street lights don’t work. Hospitals aren’t able to provide a constant supply of electricity for all their equipment, putting many people’s lives in danger.

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