Germany and UNDP Support the Livelihoods of Children with Disabilities in East Jerusalem

Nov 29, 2017

Geoff Prewitt, UNDP Deputy Special Representative, with the Chef at Jerusalem Princess Basma Centre

East Jerusalem, 29 November 2017 – The Federal Republic of Germany, through its German Development Bank KfW, the Jerusalem Princess Basma Centre (JPBC) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP/PAPP), marked the opening of a new kitchen unit and dining hall that meet health and safety standards to enable the continuation of services provided by the Princess Basma Centre in East Jerusalem.

The Representative of Germany in Ramallah, Mr Peter Beerwerth stressed: “We are very proud that with the support of the German government the closure of these much needed facilities could be prevented. The rehabilitated kitchen and dining hall now meet global health and security standards and enable the continuation of services the Center provides for people with disabilities in East Jerusalem.”

H.E Adnan Al Husseini, Governor of Jerusalem emphasized that the Jerusalem Princess Basma Centre provides outstanding rehabilitation services not only to Jerusalemites, but also to Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza Strip through its an exceptional outreach programme. “There is a dire need to support such a Jerusalemite institution that has been serving communities for more than 52 years, despite the ongoing restrictions and closures in the city."

The rehabilitation of the kitchen unit is jointly funded by the Federal Republic of Germany, through phase 10 of KfW’s Employment Generation Programme, and the Jerusalem Princess Basma Centre and implemented by UNDP. Rehabilitation works covered a total area of approximately 205 m2 including the dining hall as well as the kitchen service area and barrier-free sanitary units for males and females.

“For those of us who know the work of Princess Basma, we are aware of the extraordinary service it provides to individuals and families in this region. You only have to listen to the mothers and carers of the children who are looked after here, to realise that the goodness provided through the care, has a positive effect on so many lives.  When a child is enabled to be treated and educated, families are transformed, mental stress is relieved, and smiles and happiness can abound,” said Archbishop Suhail Dawani. “We know, that in our region this work is still desperately needed, as many here are in desperate situations. I hope that we can spread the good work of the Jerusalem Princess Basma even further, bringing alleviation to families, children and individuals through the excellent service it provides,” he added.

UNDP Deputy Special Representative, Geoffrey Prewitt, thanked the staff of Jerusalem Princess Basma Centre for the services they provide to communities in need. He also thanked the Government of Germany for their longstanding partnership and highlighted that the Employment Generation Programme has significantly improved people’s livelihoods and supported their resilience. “Through this project, we are not only helping the Jerusalem Princess Basma Centre provide meals that are fresh and nutritious, in a healthy workspace, we are also creating job opportunities and supporting the resilience of institutions in the city. With this project, we have been able to generate approximately 713 workdays and expect to benefit around 1500 people,” he added.

The Director General of JPBC, Mr Ibrahim Faltas, highlighted in his speech that the support provided by UNDP and KFW comes at a crucial time for the institution to continue supporting a vulnerable segment of the society; children with disabilities and their families. “The kitchen is renovated according to international standards, ensuring the sustainability of the services of the organization," he added.

The Jerusalem Princess Basma Centre is a charitable, non-governmental, non-profit institution, established in 1965.  The Centre provides services to around 2,571 people annually covering cases of children with disabilities who receive rehabilitation therapy services and their families from East Jerusalem, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. In addition, the Centre provides support to school students in the inclusive education programme, university students enrolled in the clinical training programme, adult persons with disabilities enrolled in the vocational training programme.

Contact information

United Nations Development Programme

Dania Darwish, Communications Specialist, Tel. +972-2-6268229 – e-mail: dania.darwish@undp.org. For more information on UNDP/PAPP see http://www.ps.undp.org.

German Representative Office in Ramallah

Laura-Louise Scheller, Spokesperson, Tel. +972 (0) 2 297 7648 – e-mail: pr-1@rama.diplo.de. For more information on the German Representative Office see http://www.ramallah.diplo.de.

KfW - German Development Bank

Raghad Shanti, Office Manager, Tel. +970-2-2400730 – e-mail: Raghad.shanti@kfw.de, KfW Office Ramallah / Al Bireh. For more information about KfW Development Bank see http://www.kfw-entwicklungsbank.de.

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