Reference : V-P-IL-E-02996
Date : 20/04/2017
Caption : Khan Younis. This 57 years old single woman knew the ICRC when she received a letter through the ICRC from her father who was detained. Then they both worked for the ICRC.
Photographer : ALWAHEIDI, Nidal
Confidentiality level : public
Publication restrictions : publication without restrictions
Copyright : ICRC
Description : This 57 years old single woman was born in Khan Younis camp. Her father used to work with the International Emergency Troops. In 1967, the war erupted between the Arab countries and Israel and he was captured in Atlit. She was seven years old when it happened.
Soon after that, rumors started to reach her and her family: “We received news that he was captured," she says. “At that time, we left the house and went to the Al-Mawasi region because it was safer. At the end of the Six Day War, we returned home.” She recalls how painful the absence of their father was for her and her brothers.
She was playing in front of her house when a relative approached, carrying a letter from her father. This was the fourth letter that her father had written, but the first they actually received. The letter reassured them, she says: “We felt as if we regained our souls when the letter arrived.” As the letter was stamped with the ICRC logo, she and her mother became aware of the ICRC’s role as an international organization that cares for prisoners and this revived their hope.
After 40 days of imprisonment, her father was released; he came back home with a beard. “At first we were frightened by the way he looked, but our happiness for his return washed away all other strange feelings; there is nothing like embracing a father,” she says.
After his release, Her father made contact with the ICRC. Subsequently, the ICRC opened three offices in the Gaza Strip - Gaza, Khan Younis and Rafah - and he became a member of ICRC’s staff. Her father’s work at the ICRC had a major impact on her when she was deciding the course of her own life. She used to listen to her father as he shared various stories about the ICRC and its activities. Although she could see from her father the toll that humanitarian work can sometimes take, she nevertheless decided to follow in his footsteps and choose the same career.
Original material : digital
Resolution : 5201x3467
Orientation : landscape
Colour/B&W : colour