YWCA Palestine Organizes a Webinar on “Actions in Solidarity with Palestine”
The YWCA of Palestine, in partnership with YWCA Japan, Juzoor for Health and Social Development, and Global Ministries of the United Church of Christ and the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), hosted a webinar under the title “Actions in Solidarity with Palestine” on 29 November 2021, which marked the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.
The webinar shed light on the current situation in Palestine, and the children program in Gaza. The main speakers included the General Secretary of YWCA Palestine Amal Tarazi, the President of YWCA Japan Satoko Fujitani, the General Director of Juzoor Dr. Umyyah Khammash as well as its Director in Gaza Yahya Abd, the Director of the Joint Advocacy Initiative (JAI) Nidal Abuzuluf, and Executive, Middle East and Europe at Global Ministries of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and United Church of Christ Dr. Peter Makari. The webinar was facilitated by Lara Khammash who is an intern at YWCA Palestine and member of the World YWCA Leadership Cohort 2021.
Tarazi affirmed that the webinar sought to mobilize international solidarity with Palestine by raising awareness of the suffering of Palestinians under occupation and calling on international NOGs and individuals alike to break the silence about the ongoing violations of the Palestinians’ rights guaranteed by the international law and UN resolutions, specifically the right to self-determination, freedom, and return as well as the recognition of the State of Palestine on 1967 boarders.
She also stressed the importance of partnership and networking between the different local and international NGOs to bring about change and create a better reality for Palestinians, especially young women and men. She highlighted the programs of YWCA Palestine, which aim to plant the seeds of hope for a brighter future through the empowerment of youth economically and socially, and promoting their role in the society and participation in decision-making.
Ms. Fujitani spoke about the solidarity efforts of YWCA Japan through its partnership and joint work with YWCA Palestine and raising public awareness of the reality in Palestine. She also praised the efforts made towards empowering Palestinian youth at all levels.
Dr. Makari spoke about the long-term partnership with YWCA Palestine, which has contributed to bringing about positive change through several programs and initiatives implemented in the West Bank and refugee camps.
Abuzuluf touched on the work of the Joint Advocacy Initiative between the YWCA and YMCA Palestine aimed at mobilizing support for Palestine.
He highlighted the Olive Tree Campaign launched in 2002 in response to the uprooting of thousands of olive trees by the Israeli occupation to build the Separation Wall. He noted that the campaign, through the support of international partners, has succeeded in planting around 193 thousand olive trees in over 2600 farmlands across the West Bank and Gaza. He pointed out that the JAI is planning to plan 40 thousand olive trees next year.
Dr. Khammash spoke about the “Hope for the Future” initiative, which was implemented in Gaza in partnership with YWCA Palestine and in cooperation with the Ministry of Education, with the aim of providing psychological support for children in light of the difficult situation they live in.
Mr. Abd shed light on the reality of people in Gaza under the ongoing siege.
The webinar participants affirmed their solidarity with the Palestinian people in their struggle towards freedom, and their support of the YWCA in Palestine and civil society organizations that strive to create a better future for Palestinians.
In 1977, The United Nations General Assembly declared 29 November as the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.