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1. Childrenís Summer Camps: are aimmed at children aged 13-15 and include various activities: cultural, entertainment, art and craft workshops and trips (with participants charged only a symbolic fee for the Summer Camp program).


2. Childrenís Exchanges: every summer the center sends some of the Shuífat Campís children to Italy and France for summer camps projects; exchanges with European children; and the experience of a short period of travel overseas. Such opportunities offer children the chance to expereience other cultures, make new friends, and more importantly, a chance to step outside the regionís conflict, and the hardships of life in the refugee camp. In addition to this, the Center is also currently pursuing the idea of a winter-time exchange project.


3. French Fraternity Project: was signed in February 2003, with the French Loving Society from Limiee (France). This project entails occasional visits and exchanges between the youth enrolled on the project; a number of shared sports activities, cultural exchange program, and more generally, a program offering medical assistance to the Palestinian people.


4. Developing Young Female Community Leaders:(Ford Foundation-Cairo)

This program aims to mobilize young women towards the following:

  • Reinforcement of womenís equal participation and their roles in developing the local     society, fighting social stigmas (such as drugs, school drop out rates, early marriage, etc.).

  • Promote voluntary work as a way to build and develop a democratic society, in all areas: social, economical, cultural and political.

  • Cooperate with local and international organizations to train women and girls in obtaining skills for self-leadership and social work, acting to reinforce the importance of community development in all areas.


5. Development of Pioneer Women Leaders: aims retain and strengthen the cultural aspects of society. Aimed primarily at youth (aged between 13-18 years of age), and realised through various extra-curricula activities such as the Spring Festival and Oukaz Cultural Festival. The Palestinian Ministry of Youth and Sports supervises the project.


6. Progetto Sviluppo CGIL - Social promotion of youth, and combating drug addiction in East Jerusalem: Progetto Sviluppo CGIL, in cooperation with another Italian NGO, ARCS, has drafted a specific proposal outlining a series of activities of limited duration (music, sports, arts, computers, etc.), and aimed at combating drug addiction among the Palestinian youth in East Jerusalem. In parallel to this, the project seeks to promote social welfare and fostering hope for a better future for these troubled young people. The center has contracted Firas Abu Shama, a social worker, in order to conduct preliminary research into "Drug Addiction in Shu'fat Refugee Camp", backed by the Italian Government and a number of Italian NGOs.


7. Promoting women in rural and refugees areas to decision-making and public life: is a new project funded by USAID (American Cooperation). Through this project, the center aims to increase public awareness of the role of women in public life, and the roles women can lead in the decision making of local and regional government bodies and institutions. The awareness campaign will be measured by the levels of adoption of women's rights platforms by local candidates (and females candidates elected in the recent Palestinian Parliamentary, and local council elections), and measured against the degree of media coverage of women's issues, follow up programming at schools or with youth, and/or holding of a local rally on women's rights. A series of workshops will contribute in steering, and increasing, the capabilities of the rural women campaigners in advocating for their human rights, as well as helping them communicate their beliefs effectively to other women and men (and among society, at large). Long-term successes will be measured through the continued positive activities of female NGOs and the emergence and support for new civil society leaders, who share in our efforts to achieve a better level of womenís rights in Palestinian society.


8. Progetti Centri Rousseau

The Rousseau to Shu'fat Project 2002-2004

Centri Rousseau is a social cooperative, created in 1968, with the aim to develop social and educational projects for children and youth. The mission of the cooperative is aimed at developing educational projects for children and youth, focusing on group dynamics, communication, social abilities, and relationships. The Centri Rousseau project began in 2002, and ended in December 2004, acting to foster a network/partnership between Shuífat RCís three principal associations: the Womanís Center, the Disability Center and the campís Popular Committee.

The aim of the project was to promote professional services for youth and children in the camp, who are otherwise marginalized as a result of the prolonged political, and violent conflict in the region. The project was developed via the networking of the campís mains groups and associations, as well as the creation of a team of social workers that received two-months of training, in Italy, on social and educational skills and working with minors. After the teamís training the educational services for minors began, along with the promotion of activities as theatrical activities, summer camps, artistic and creativity workshops, street education, sport and various cultural activities.

9. The Children and Youth of Shuífat: New Communitarian and Professional Resources, with Micro Economic Support 2005-2006 (in progress)

In the second phase of Centri Rousseau project (as outlined in the above section), it was decided that the network between the institutions of Shu'fat RC and the Shuífat United Committee, formed in the projectís earlier stages, be strengthened. Positive previous experiences made it possible to further develop the active partnership between Centri Rousseau and the Shu'fat United Committee. The partnership sought to work together and address issues such as a methodology for future work, a methodology for conducting needs assessments, and planning new activities.

Firstly, a common methodology of work was established, alongside a common methodology of needs assessment, which aimed to help the community to identify and prioritize needs, as well as finding alternative solutions to the socio-economic problems, and generally harsh living conditions, which continue to face the campís inhabitants. Such tasks were addressed by considering the differing points of view: environmental, social and economical problems.

The main objective of the project was implemented through several activities structured in three main areas: educational area, income generation area and networking area. The project aims to benefit everyone residing in the camp.

The projectís staff is composed of a Palestinian team, cooperating with an Italian supervisor, and an additional team in Italy working on the development of an Italian network of associations to support the project, and the realization of a general awareness campaign related to Israeli-Palestinian issues, in Italy.

The objective of the educational area is to change the situation for the children in the camp and it was implemented through the establishment of an educational service for children and youth in the camp between 6 and 14 years old. The staff of the previous project helped to create a new educators team with a local coordinator who attended to trainings concerning educational tools during the project and the project itself has been supported by volunteers from Italy in Palestine. In collaboration with the Italian team, the Palestinian staff organised two Italian-Palestinian summer camps in Italy. The first was in July 2005; the second will be in July 2006.

The activities of the ďincome generation areaĒ aims at establishing a female cooperative for hand crafted products. The cooperative was established and strengthened by defining a list of products to sell. This was achieved with input from the staff with marketing experience, and through a training program for all the cooperativeís staff. Products were commercialized through the network in Italy, Israel and Palestine.

The first phase of project was based on a methodology of work, which aims at establishing and developing a network between the associations involved. The objective of the second phase is to strengthen the ďlocalĒ connections in this network and to instruct the Shu'fat United Committee upon how best to implement ďinternational connectionsĒ with a number of associations and organizations abroad. Thus, the ďnetworking areaĒ of the project aims at integrating the local network into an international one, possibly structured into three layers, depending on nature of organizations involved. The Italian network is structured in three layers (department layer, institutional layer and grass-roots layer) involving Municipalities of Milan's hinterland, 80 local groups and associations in regione Lombardia and 3 departments. The Palestinian network involves Municipalities and Associations across East Jerusalem, and has been strengthened while the third layer is being established that will involve a number of Israeli peace associations. The entire network was established and developed through shared activities, such as designing project sessions, exchanges and training in social, educative, cultural, health, micro-economic projects, and through sending delegations between Italy and Palestine (a Palestinian delegation received in Italy, and an Italian institutional delegation called ď Major for PeaceĒ in Palestine). 

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