(From left) Spanish Ambassador to Jordan, Aránzazu Bañón Dávalos, visited Baqa’a camp in Jordan and met with Palestine refugee students. (UNRWA Photo)
The Spanish Ambassador to Jordan Aránzazu Bañón Dávalos, visited Baqa’a camp for Palestine refugees in Jordan and witnessed the vital services provided by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA).
Bañón was accompanied by Acting Director of UNRWA and international Organizations Directorate of the Department of Palestinian Affairs, Heba Al Manni, the Director of UNRWA Affairs in Jordan, Marta Lorenzo and other UNRWA staff.
The visit follows the launch of the project Environmental improvement in Palestinian refugee camps in Jordan, a multidimensional project aimed at improving the living conditions in Palestine refugee camps in Jordan.
The project, funded by the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation and Development (AECID) with an initial allocation of funds of EUR 500,000 in 2021, to be increased in the coming years, adopts a strategic approach which focuses on community participation and empowerment through awareness raising on climate change and environmental sustainability.
This initiative, which will set the basis for the improvement of the environmental health and living conditions of more than 400,000 Palestine refugees in Jordan, is of vital importance to support the modernization efforts of the Agency in line with global commitments of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The project is also in line with the Agency’s commitment to the protection of Palestine refugees with disabilities, as exemplified by its disability inclusion principles – non-discrimination, awareness, participation and accessibility – and in accordance with the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
The tour of the refugee camp started at the UNRWA Baqa’a Preparatory Girls’ School No. 1 & 2, where Bañón was briefed about the living conditions of Palestine refugee population in Jordan and recent developments in UNRWA operations across the Middle East, including the Agency’s adaptation to the COVID-19 crisis by ensuring the continuation of service provision to Palestine refugees in health, education and environmental sectors.
During the meeting, Al Manni, briefed the visitors about the situation of Palestine refugees in the camps in Jordan and the role the department plays in coordination with the camp service committees and UNRWA in ensuring a sustainable and quality level of cleanliness for the health and safety of refugees especially amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The protection of Palestinian refugees and their rights remains of the utmost importance. The mandate of UNRWA and its work are crucial to provision of basic services to refugees,” added Bañón.