Youth’s first bi-national activity for the year 2011-2012

Youth’s first bi-national activity for the year 2011-2012
December 25, 2011 sadaka reut

On the 6th of December 2011, 49 Palestinian and Jewish youngsters came for all across the country to participate in an afternoon of activity, partnership and fun. They are the participants of Sadaka-Reut’s group – Jewish and Palestinian youths working on a weekly basis in their communities with Sadaka-Reut’s team of committed facilitators. They came from the Palestinian communities of Qalanswa, Kufr Kassem and Lid and from the Jewish cities of Natanya, Tel-Aviv andBat Yam.

But today, for the first time this year, they had the opportunity to meet and learn together with their counterparts. Indeed, for many of the youngsters this was their first time to experience a bi-national activity.

When the busses arrived, the youth were divided to 3 bi-nationally mixed groups. As the ‘getting to know each other’ games rolled on, the ice was slowly beginning to melt. After an hour of intensive outdoor activity, the youth set off for the main activity of the day.

The facilitators rounded up the mixed groups, each in a different classroom. While they were sitting, pencils, paper and color-markers in front of them, the facilitators said: “Imagine that you are in a place where you can express whatever you want, whatever’s bothering you in society… Now imagine that you are in a protest march, a civil gathering where people demonstrate their right to speak out”.

The youth were then encouraged to phrase a slogan or sentence focusing on a subject that is bothering them, and write it on a small poster they would want to hold in a demonstration if they were there. Sigal and Samira decided to write something in Hebrew and Arabic “IN THE END – WE ARE ALL GOD’S CHILDREN”

All the participants were then taken to another classroom where a big poster that features a civil protest has been hanged earlier and the youth had the chance to stand in front of the poster and have their photo taken as if they were participants in the protest behind them…

Samira and Sigal decided to stand together with their bi-lingual message in front of the poster and have their picture taken.

The youths, paired in twos, took their turn standing with their uniquely devised signs in front of the designed “Demonstration” poster. Some of the signs said: “WE WANT PEACE”, “STOP THE KILLINGS” and “SAY NO TO VIOLENCE”.  The kids loved to participate in this activity and showed great enthusiasm to speak their mind.

Another idea, that turned to be very successful and fun, was to open a Facebook group for Sadaka-Reut’s youth and encourage the kids to sign up. The idea was that the Facebook group will become a platform for mutual discussions and a place for the youth to communicate and address social and political issues. During the event, two laptops were intensively being used and more than 40 kids were enthusiastic and signed up.

The evening concluded with a presentation on this year’s Topic for the youth: “Racism”.    The kids listened to a brief explanation of Racism, its history, psychological origins and its disastrous outcomes and participated in a short discussion.

The activity was hosted by the Academic College Tel-Aviv –Jaffa, which is located very close to our offices. This is the second cooperation with the college as in the past we organized together with them a conference on Education in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. We are grateful for the college for their hospitality and courtesy.

We are proud to say the youth’s feedback of the whole event was great. Indeed, throughout the event one could sense that the kids and the staff enjoyed a welcoming and joyous activity. While they were saying goodnight to their new friends, climbing the busses taking them home, they were surprised to get a small souvenir – their “protester’s” photo printed on a magnet to be hung on the refrigerator back home.



Disclaimer: This publication has been produced with the assistance of the European Union. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of Sadaka Reut and in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union.