The Race To The 160 Million

The Race To The 160 Million
March 14, 2012 sadaka reut

The Race To The 160 Million,
Sadaka Reut’s youth group visit the city of Lod:

On the 26th of February, Sadaka Reut’s youth groups from Jaffa, Tel-Aviv, and Lod met in the city of Lod to learn, and experience the city and its citizens.

During the day, the youth participated in “The Race for The 160 Million.” They were divided into small groups racing to get to the final destination of the demolished house of the Abu-Eed family in the city. Two years ago, the seven houses of the Abu-Eed family were demolished by the government in order to build a road in that same place. The demolitions left more than 70 persons on the streets. Till this day, most have not found adequate housing. The “160 Million” promised to the winners of this race, represented the 160 million NIS that were guaranteed by the Israeli government to the city and were supposed to “empower and develop the city of Lod.” However, the money was never transferred, and the city continues to portray a reality of neglect, discrimination, and a clear division and difference between the Palestinian and Jewish citizens of the city.

The process of studying about the current situation of the city during the game was very independent and to the point. To begin with, the groups
discussed the term “home” and what it represents for every one of them. Then, they walked around the city interviewing locals about Lod. They asked questions like “What do you think of the city?” and also questions like “How would you imagine the city in 10 years?”  After the interviews they collected information about the Palestinian house demolitions in the city through different assignments.

The race ended as mentioned in the location of the demolished house of the Abu-Eed family. There one can see seven piles of destruction standing as a faint testimony of a family that was torn apart. Each group took photos of the demolitions that presents the loss of the term “home” that they discussed earlier. They later sat together surrounded by the rubble, and listened to the first-hand account of Um-Rawdi that shared her story of the demolitions. She talked about that day as a Nakba (catastrophe) for her family. On that day all of the families of her seven sons were dispersed across the country in search of housing.

After that emotional meeting, and during the dinner, the youth joined back together with their groups. They summarized their journey and looked back at the photos they took. One group mentioned the photo on the side and wrote: “The combination between the rubble and the skyline represent our feeling of injustice on the one hand, and on the other, our hope for reparations.”

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.