Our Stories

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A source of Joy - Tour boat sets sail in Gaza

Graduated recently as an architect, Raed El-Shorafa, 27 years old, was facing the risk of joining the increasing numbers of the unemployed in Gaza. Despite his good average, the job opportunities are rare. “I had no income. I was a burden on my family. Future is ahead and I was not certain of my plamore

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AIDS in Gaza: “I know, so I am not afraid”

Fifty-year-old Um Mohammad, a mother of nine, has been living with HIV for 16 years in the Gaza Strip in the occupied Palestinian territory. She was nursing her baby girl when tests revealed she was HIV positive. “We found out that I got the HIV while I was still breastfeeding my youngest. I got itmore

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Access to Healthy Water in Palestinian Villages

Sitting on hilltops, the neighbouring villages of Allar and Saida were far from the wells in the valley below. Access to water presented a daily burden. Residents spent a large part of their resources on collecting water, leaving only limited time and money for other investments. They harvested rainmore

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Creating a Culture of Leadership

Picture this:  Groups of students huddle around a large piece of paper. The papers are adorned with bright colours and complex diagrams. One teacher praises the students for their hard work. Another teacher walks around the room and tears up the students’ work.   The students are shocked amore

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Creating a Safe Place to Play

Creating safe playgrounds for children with disabilities and conserving the environment from solid waste was an idea sparked from the community’s assessment for their need to alleviate the dire state of their local environment.   The Global Environment Facility Programme, along with UNDP/ PAPP,more

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Education I am not alone

Teaching! Sounds like a lonely job; teachers work individually and struggle individually. They never have a real chance to observe how teaching occurs at the classroom next door, or even to share their experiences, give suggestions, comments and ideas to one another.  At Aziz Shahein, a school more

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Entrepreneurial spirits in Gaza

Sameer al Hams’ workshop is hard to miss.  Twelve washing machines spill from its doors into the dusty street.   He shares the workspace with a yellow, stretch Mercedes taxi and dozens of old televisions and spare parts.   But it is the washing machines that have transformed Sameer’s more

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Farmers in Gaza make the most of their date crops

Palm trees have graced the shores of the Mediterranean Sea by the Gaza Strip and provided a living for its residents for over 1,700 years.   Literally named “the Monastery of Dates”, Deir al Balah has depended for centuries on date farming for the livelihood of its 500 inhabitants.  Date fmore

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Harnessing the sun in Gaza

It is around noon and Fatheya el Braim is taking dozens of cookies from a clay oven in her backyard. The cookies are coated in sesame seed with dates inside. They have been baked in an oven fired by garden waste. Fatheya has a husband and 17 children to feed. The family has no income so she has to pmore

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In Gaza, first female mukhtarah mediates legal disputes

Um Mohammed broke the conservative tribal traditions of her community when she became one of Gaza strip’s first “Mukhtarah” – the female equivalent of Mukhtar, one who peacefully settles disputes without need to resort to formal judicial systems. “I once found myself having to intervene to resolve amore