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19th Feb 2024

‘We almost have the whole country behind us’ – Sara Abu Selmia raising vital funds for family in Gaza

Kat O'Connor

Sara and Emma Abu Selmia are raising vital funds for the people of Palestine

We have all watched the horror in Palestine unfold on our screens. We’ve gathered at marches, donated to charity, and reached out to our elected officials. The country is calling for a ceasefire and stands with the people of Palestine, but for Sara Abu Selmia, the ongoing horrors run deeper.

The Irish-Palestinian woman recently spoke to about what’s happening to her family in Palestine.

She confirmed that her aunts, uncles, and cousins have been left with nothing but a small backpack of belongings. Their homes where they once gathered for dinner and created memories have been destroyed. They’re now living in houses with up to 80 other people, and some are even living in tents.

What’s happening to them is hard to imagine, but it’s a reality for Sara and her family as they anxiously wait for daily updates from their loved ones.

“Sometimes it feels like you’re kind of fighting this battle alone”

Sara shared: “My dad still has six brothers and two sisters who are living in Gaza at the moment. Every morning is checking for proof of life and trying to see if somebody has internet to check in.”

Seeing this happen to their family has been completely harrowing for Sara and her family, especially for her father. The sisters decided to do whatever they could to help and launched a fundraiser to get vital help to their loved ones and the thousands in similar situations.

Throughout the month of January, Sara and Emma walked 320km to help raise funds for their loved ones. The walk represented the 40km each family member walked from Northern Gaza after they were displaced.

“They were displaced, their home has been bombed and completley destroyed,” Sara said.

She praised the Irish public, who most recently gathered in their tens of thousands to call for a ceasefire, for being so supportive.

“The funds will go towards basic everyday needs that I suppose we all probably take for granted things like food, like water. We also need things like essentials for babies- nappies, and formula.

“Sometimes it feels like you’re kind of fighting this battle alone. Or we will look at how heartbroken our dad is, but it really feels like kind of the whole country is behind us.”

“That’s really made such a difference,” Sara said.

You can help support Sara and Emma by donating to their fundraiser here.