Help Build Community Center for Jahalin Bedouin

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Al Eizariya, West Bank Palestine



Help Build Community Center for Jahalin Bedouin



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Puppets out of sandwich bags, Christmas trees out of painted rubber gloves, or tropical landscapes out of newspaper collages – over the years Ibtisam has always found new ways to make small donations go a long way. At Al Bustan, as the local children call the makeshift youth center, Ibtisam is offering girls of the Jahalin Bedouin aged 5 to 12 the space they crave to play, learn and express themselves. Al Bustan is the only place offering afternoon activities for the children and youth of the Jahalin Bedouin in El Ezariyah and particularly activities for creative and personal development.  The continued displacement and dispossession of the Jahalin Bedouins has left the children and women in the community most vulnerable to the effects of the destruction of the economic and social fabric of the community. A tireless educator and recent MA graduate, Ibtisam decided to step in and single-handedly fill the gap left by government agencies and non-profit organizations. For several years now, she has been working together with international volunteers to organize regular afternoon activities such as art and English classes as well as summer camps.

As Ibtisam does not belong to any established NGO or non-profit organization and has instead been organizing all community center activities on her own, she has had difficulty applying for grants which would greatly allow her to expand the work she is able to do. Additionally, Ibtisam is currently hosting these activities in a makeshift bungalow on land owned by her family. This building is wholly unsuited as a space for children to learn and spend their afternoons in: There are no washrooms, in the winter rain leaks through the roof and there is no heating, in the summer strong desert winds bring sand and dust and make the heat in the classroom unbearable. The family has obtained a building permit but is lacking the funds to construct a new youth center.

 

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With the help of the BuildPalestine community, we are first hoping to establish Al Bustan as a functioning non-profit organization, giving Ibtisam a sustainable way to move forward. We then hope to build a community center for the children and youth of Jabal al Jahalin, where we could host activities all throughout the year.

 

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classroom

Establishing a non-profit organization would create a sustainable way for Ibtisam to move forward by providing outlets to form long lasting partnerships with other organizations, and to receive higher sums of funding, such as grants, to expand the projects the center is able to work on. Additionally, in a new building Ibtisam could considerably expand the scope of  activities of Al Bustan. She dreams of offering several classes a day for different age groups, including art, music and drama classes which are currently not offered in the local high school and for which many of the girls have shown interest and considerable talent.  In addition to offering children a space to develop their talents and express themselves, Al Bustan would offer employment to women from the community, many of whom experience unemployment or underemployment.

 

 

Why should someone support our team?

By funding the establishment of Al Bustan as a fully functioning non-profit organization, and further providing funds for the building itself, you are helping us to further develop our activities and expand our team. While Ibtisam is currently the only member of staff working at al-Bustan full time and willingly dedicates her time to serving the children in her community free of charge, as the center expands it will not be sustainable for her to dedicate this time without income.

This is why we hope to reimburse Ibtisam for her time, dedication, and passionate service over the next half year while al-Bustan becomes more firmly established from the funds in this campaign. Your support will help to employ Ibtisam full time, as well to fulfill our desire to employ other women from the community as the center grows and expands as well.

 

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What support is needed beyond money?

  • Advice/Mentoring on how to develop the organization further and establish new donor relations.
  • Building Material Donations: If any organization or company will be willing to donate materials such as concrete, iron, bricks, etc., that will make our crowdfunding goal more attainable and leave us space to use monetary donations for other necessary purposes.

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