EAPPI October NewsletterDecember 12, 2005
October was a busy month for the EAPPI as the fourteenth group of Ecumenical Accompaniers (EAs) settled into their placements. Most of the teams were involved in the annual olive harvest around the West Bank. During the month, the EAs received their week of post-orientation in Jericho. They also received a number of international delegations, including groups from Denmark, Switzerland and Sweden and have been helping with the shooting of a film on EAPPI, taken by Ecumenical Accompaniers from Denmark.
News from around the placements
The Jerusalem team have maintained a presence at the Al Bawabeh checkpoint in East Jerusalem each morning. They have worked with Rabbis for Human Rights, helping with the olive harvest in the village of Yanoun, and other locations across the West Bank.
The team in Bethlehem have been doing regular checkpoint watch at the Gilo checkpoint, where tensions heightened following the shooting of three settlers on the Hebron to Bethlehem road. The team worked with human rights organisations, reporting incidents they witnessed at the checkpoint. They are also giving conversational classes at the Lajee Centre of the AIDA refugee camp and working with the Beit Sahour municipality.
The team have been continuing the activities of the previous group of EAs, taking English conversational groups at Palestinian women’s organisations, organising activities at the Dar Qandeel youth club and at the Kindergarten of the Tulkarem refugee camp. Noticing that the kindergarten had a lack of toys, the team asked if the Lutheran World Federation could help. Thank you to the LWF for their kind donation to the kindergarten.
The team in Jayyous have continued their daily ‘gate watch’ (at least two hours a day). Activities this month have also included English conversation groups in Jayyous and Qalqiliya, supporting the Jayyous Womens' Society, and accompanying the Palestinian Red Crescent Mobile Clinic to villages beyond the Wall. The team have also been helping with olive picking.
The team have been working with the Evangelical Lutheran Church’s Meals on Wheels programme and giving English conversational classes at the Shufat refugee camp, as well as providing team building training to staff at the camp. They have also worked with the Treatment and Rehabilitation Centre by conducting interviews with victims of torture in the Jenin and Nablus areas.
Settler activity has increased in Hebron recently and the usual ‘school run’ with the pupils of Cordoba school has been difficult, with EAs having eggs, stones and apples thrown at them. The teachers and pupils of the school have been protesting against a new checkpoint, which they are forced to use to get to and from school.
The olive harvest has begun in Yanoun and the EAs have been working in parts of the village where villagers have had difficulties harvesting due to threats from settlers.
Mapping the way forward for EAPPI The EAPPI is holding an evaluation workshop, on 14th November in Ramallah and 15th November in Beit Jala. The aim of the workshop is to bring together EAPPI staff, partners and national coordinators from the various sending countries to map the way forward for the programme. The workshop will be based on the outcome of an evaluation of the programme which took place earlier in the year. If you would like any further information, please contact: Gemma Abbs, Communication & Advocacy Officer (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Creating a ChainReaction
Following a successful first edition, the next edition of our new quarterly magazine, ChainReaction, will be coming out at the end of this month. To be added to our mailing list, please contact the Communication & Advocacy Officer. New articles Please visit website to view recent articles: www.eappi.org For more information on the WCC: www.wcc-coe.org
The Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI) supports Palestinians and Israelis working for peace by monitoring and reporting violations of human rights and international humanitarian law, offering protection by accompanying local communities in daily activities, and by advocating with churches for a peaceful end to the Occupation. The programme, which began in 2002, is coordinated by the World Council of Churches (WCC). The WCC is a fellowship of 347 churches, in more than 100 countries in all continents from virtually all Christian traditions. Its office is in Geneva, Switzerland.
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