Education under occupation

The 25th of February marks the anniversary of the massacre that took place at the Ibrahimi Mosque, in 1994, where 29 Palestinians were shot dead, and another 129 were left wounded. The massacre was committed by a Jewish doctor – an immigrant from the United States and resulted in prolonged curfews, restrictions on movement for Palestinians, the closing of their shops and marketplaces, and a pattern of impunity for settler violence. Since then Israel has continued with its policy of punishing those who are being attacked.

The center of the city is deserted and in ruins. You have to visit there, repeatedly, in order to begin to understand not only how it looks but the understand the  impact of the 120 blockades and checkpoints that cut off abandoned streets in the middle in the centre of the Old City.

This video was made by the Ecumenical Accompaniment Program in Palestine and Israel, documenting education under occupation through the eyes of some young students and teachers in Hebron.




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Trivia with a Cause

shuhadacelebhrHelp us raise money to support our education projects in Hebron and the surrounding areas.

Trivia Night, Fri 30 Jan:

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Living in the path of settlers

There is a military watch box on the roof of the Shamsiya house, making the roof a closed military zone and the family is forbidden to access it. For security reasons the Israeli military will search the house on a regular basis. On Saturdays, there is a tour for settlers through Hebron and the settlers from the Tel Rumeida settlement walk past the Shamsiya house. They access the roof and have damaged the water tanks. They throw stones at the family below and their daughter was knocked unconscious after being hit by a rock thrown by a settler. The Israeli military do not stop the settlers from being on the roof. The family are part of the “shoot back” camera project, run by the Israeli Human Rights organisation B’tselem. Vulnerable families are given cameras to document attacks on them and their property.

In the following 9 minute film, Yuval Orr shows what the daily life is like for 15-year-old Awni Abu Shamsiya as he attempts to maintain some shred of normalcy in his hometown of Hebron.

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Trivia With A Cause

pster2aYou’ve saved the date and now its time to get serious – time for commitment!

Another fabulous Trivia With A Cause  to raise funds for the Dkaika community education access project.

 Friday January 30, 2015
Time: 6pm for a 6.30pm start
Address: Gumbramorra Hall, Addison Road Community Centre, 142 Addison Road Marrickville


dkaika village

Dkaika village

Dkaika has been fighting for its existence with the Israeli government for a decade. It has been demolished, rebuilt and faced yet again with demolition orders. In 2011, they even demolished part of the school.

Since then, UNICEF and Islamic Relief Worldwide have rebuilt and renovated the school, providing a better environment for the students. However it is a primary school only; after Year 6 students must travel at least 7 km for high school.


Driver in Dkaika taking the young boys to school - the girls get to sit inside!

Driver in Dkaika taking the young boys to school – the girls get to sit inside!For years, the students have walked this distance, over rough mountain tracks, in the heat of summer and through winter snow. Now we are supporting a driver and vehicle, to take those kids to high school.

The aim of this Trivia with a Cause is to raise sufficient funds to ensure the fuel and the driver’s wages are paid until the end of the school year, and if possible, into next year.


Young woman from Dkaika on her way to university,

Now that the school transport scheme is operating, three young women from Dkaika village are  able to take up their university places.  After dropping off the high school kids, the driver continues to the nearest university so these young women can continue their studies.

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Trivia with a Cause

Driver in Dkaika taking the young boys to school

Driver in Dkaika taking the young boys to school

Hold the date! Join us for our upcoming trivia night to raise funds for the Dkaika community education access project.

Date: Friday January 30, 2015

Time: 6pm for a 6.30pm start

Address: Gumbramorra Hall, Addison Road Community Centre, 142 Addison Road Marrickville

The Dkaika community has one school that offers education only until the 6th grade. It is considered to be a landmark as it has allowed the community to survive through the provision of the very basic service of education. The problem lies in what comes after the 6th grade.  The long distance between the primary and high schools over the rugged desert road has meant a daily trip on foot through the mountains. Such a trip has made the participation of (specifically female) students in the educational process less likely. In 2014 funds raised by Leichhardt Friends of Hebron supported six female school students and two female university students with their ongoing education through this project.

Come to the trivia night and help us raise funds for the safe transportation of the children and young students in Dkaika.

Early bird ticket prices are $25 waged/$15 unwaged

Tickets after January 23 and on the door are $30 waged and $20 unwaged

Want to get in early? Click here and book tickets online now



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School children in Hebron don’t battle traffic jams, they battle tear gas

Stun grenades at children

Since the beginning of the school year in August over one hundred tear gas grenades have been used against the children. Tear gas works by irritating mucous membranes in the eyes, nose, mouth and lungs, and causes crying, sneezing, coughing, difficulty breathing, pain in the eyes, and temporary blindness.

2nd October 2014 | International Solidarity Movement | Hebron, Occupied Palestine

“The child are having problems concentrating on their school work due to their emotional state and the stress due to the daily attacks by the occupation forces, which are continuously escalating.” Stated Hebron teacher, Shukri Zaroo, to the International Solidarity Movement (ISM).

Children in al-Khalil (Hebron) are forced to pass through a military checkpoint each morning and afternoon in order to reach and leave their schools. International activists try to monitor these military checkpoints, both to document the events and to stand with the children.

ISM activists monitor the Salaymeh checkpoint (29) each school day morning and afternoon. Since school began on August 24th, this is what the ISM activists have witnessed:

August 25thIsraeli forces fired 15 tear gas grenades and canisters, as well as five stun grenades at children as they waited to go to school. Tear gas drifted into the courtyard and many children and teachers choked and spluttered in the playground. School was delayed for over an hour. At one point a Red Crescent ambulance had to be called as two teachers and two children, aged 10 and 12-years-old, required medical treatment for excessive tear gas inhalation.

For the full story of what has been going on in Hebron at the start of the school year, click here.

This video shows the children in the midst of being fired upon with tear gas by soldiers.


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From Rabbis for Human Rights and Operation Dove  – this article about the ongoing and systematic destruction of houses and structures in Area C of the West Bank – 38 persons lost their homes, including 21 children. The continuous displacement and loss of land and livelihood occurs on a daily basis in the West Bank, and as the Gaza massacre starts to fade from the media cycle, the opportunity to seize a thousand acres of land near Bethlehem is taken for expansion of settlements.

The following update on demolitions in Khirbet ar-Rahma comes Operation Dove, an Italian NGO that focuses on the South Hebron Hills. Khirbet ar-Rahma is a small and poor Palestinian village in Area C of the occupied territories. Since its location in Area C means it is under full Israeli control, the villagers are subjected to the Israeli military planning system that blocks almost every Palestinian attempt at building and developing within their village. Whatever is built,  is demolished every now and again, as demonstrated by this most recent demolition.  In the background of thephotos, please note the  new Jewish settlement, some of  which is illegal by the Israeli law,  but nevertheless is permitted to stay intact. This is an example of institutionalized discrimination, and demonstrates why RHR submitted an appeal to the High Court of Justice to return planning authority to the Palestinians in Area C. 

September 1 2014 demolition at Khirbet ar-Rahwa with Israeli settlement in background. PHOTO: Operation Dove

From Operation Dove:

38 persons lost their home, 21 of them children

Khirbet ar Rahwa – On 1st of September 2014, during the afternoon, the Israeli army and the D.C.O. (District Coordination Office) entered into the palestinian village of Khirbet ar-Rahwa, in the South Hebron Hills, and demolished 3 houses (tents), 3 animal shelters and 3 toilettes. No demolition order was delivered for these structures.

September 1 2014 demolition at Khirbet ar-Rahwa in the South Hebron Hills. PHOTO: Operation Dove

All the demolished structures were built with simple materials. Ar-Rawha that is located in area C, has no access to electricity, to the water pipeline and to any kind of facilities and services.
The houses belonged to the Altal family and to the Jabaarin family. Because of the demolitions, 38 persons, 21 of them children, lost their houses. All the families are waiting for humanitarian aid.

The village of ar-Rahwa is surrounded by the settlement of Tene and the outpost of Havat Moor. This outpost received demolition order in 2000, but the D.C.O decided to not demolish any house until now. Also the outpost is connected with the electricity net and water pipelines, services that are denied for the Palestinians of ar-Rawha, who are the legal owners of the land where the settlement of Tene is located.

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