On Saturday, 20th April , Association Najdeh welcomed in Shatila center a German delegation from the German daily Taz in the so-called “travel to civil society”. The delegation included 17 people, represented by lawyers, judges, doctors, social workers, specialized in social welfare and refugee issues.
The Executive Director of Association Najdeh Ms. Leila Al-Ali, briefed the delegation on the conditions and history of the camp and the situation of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon. She also introduced Najdeh and its programs and services provided in the center for children and local community.
At the end of the visit, the delegation visited the camp and the memorial statue of Sabra and Shatila massacre and the Martyrs’ Cemetery inside and outside the camp. The delegation is part of “Travels into the civil society”, which has been operating since 2008, to communicate with NGOs, projects to learn more about the social, cultural or political dynamic of the communities. The visits are organized by the daily newspaper “TAZ” in Berlin, where newspaper staff contact NGOs and identify destinations.
The Grammy Award-winning artist Dua Lipa visited Burj El Barajneh camp and Association Najdeh educational and psychosocial Support center in the camp, with UNICEF and MAP delegations.
To watch the full video please check the artist Dua lipa’s officially channel on Youtube
Dua Lipa was welcomed by Palestinian Folklore – Dabka – dancing by association Najdeh Children. The Executive Director of Association Najdeh Ms. Leila Al-Ali, briefed the artist on the conditions and history of the camp and the situation of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon. She also introduced Najdeh and its programs and services provided in Lebanon and the in the center for children and local community.
The artist Dua lipa and the accompanying delegation toured in the center and participated in the different children’s activities on protection from exploitation, gender equality, relaxation and expression, where children shared Lipa their dreams and aspirations. Dua responded to a child question about the reasons of her visit to the refugee camp where she said: “I understand at the personal level because I sought asylum from kosovo, and I want to be here and meet the children, to help and show the world how amazing what are you doing here, how inspired to be here, and how so hard to achieve your dreams”.
At the end of the tour, a girl from najdeh center, and on behalf of the children and the association, presented gift Lipa which is Jerusalem city painting.
With the support of UNICEF and Medical Aid for Palestinians, within the project of strengthening Community-Based Child Protection, Gender Based Violence Intervention and Psycho-social Support in Palestinian Camps and Gatherings in Lebanon, and the Right-to-Play “TAALOM” Project, Association Najdeh organized on the occasion of Mother’s and children’s days ceremonies and recreational activities in the psychosocial centers and kindergartens. The ceremonies included several educational, entertaining, traditional dancing and carnivals.
On the occasion of the eighth of March International Women’s Day, Association Najdeh organized a dialogue table in Al-Baddawi camp to discuss the situation of the middle classes of the Palestinian women in Lebanon, with the presence of a number of social and educational organizations, teachers from UNRWA schools, worker women and women from the local community.
The dialogue table was addressed to the Women and working women and female employees, who form an important part of the middle classes of the Palestinian society. The situation of Palestinian women in Lebanon through different perspectives, workers, employees, strugglers and active members in society, in addition to women and girls belonging to this class.
The dialogue table was opened by the coordinator of the Najdeh Badawi branch Hanaa El-Einain, in which she emphasized on the role played by Palestinian women in the political, social and economic fields despite the difficult conditions they suffer from at their homeland and in the diaspora and depriving them of their civil and human rights. In Lebanon, as she is a part of the Palestinian people, she is also deprived from the right to work.
Abu El-Enein stressed that this occasion is an opportunity to continue the struggle until the fulfillment of women’s human rights, as they suffer from discrimination and not granting equal rights.
Abu El-Enein presented the situation of Palestinian worker women who suffer from the lack of job opportunities and lack of stability and occupational safety due to their seasonal work, pointing out that 82% of them do not have work contracts, suffer from low wages, and evasion of employers, and face exploitation and discrimination in Work conditions: Overtime and overtime unpaid work, denial of end-of-service benefits, denial of sick leave, childbirth and maternity, as well as violence, such as abuse and sexual harassment, as well as family burdens.
A number of interventions took place during the dialogue table. An intervention by the Kg supervisor at Palestinian Women Union at Baddawi camp Emphasized on the need for serious action in accordance with a clear plan for the advancement of the status of women, pointing to the importance of security and job security, which makes her feel stable and the importance of raising awareness of her rights in the scope of work in order to obtain a fair wage and maternity leave, etc..
Another intervention by the educator Amal Al-Ahmad from the Al-Batuf school – UNRWA said that woman is half the society, and her struggle is not less important than man’s struggle, and she plays an active role at all levels.
The social worker Najla Shalash referred to the exploitation and unequal wages paid to women in the field of work and the lack of access to the minimum wage in many areas, pointing to sexual exploitation, absence of means to protect women. She called on the committees and parties to speak on behalf of the Palestinian people and demand their rights, and increase the initiatives on women’s rights and the right to work.
Speeches by a group of graduates who spoke about the difficulties and challenges they face in the field of work, the difficulty of finding jobs, and the deprivation of the refugees from health insurance and the absence of job security.
A dialogue table was organized at Nahr al-Bared camp on the occasion of the 8th of March, the International Women’s Day, the table discussed the situation of the middle classes of Palestinian women in Lebanon, in the presence of the Popular Committee and a number of social and educational NGOs, teachers from UNRWA schools, worker women, girls and women from the local community .
The dialogue table, focused on working women and girls and employees who form an important part of the Palestinian society, also focused on presenting the situation of Palestinian women in Lebanon through different perspectives (worker women, and activists in society), women and girls Who belong to this category.
The dialogue table was opened with a speech by the coordinator of the Nahr al-Bared Branch, Nawal al-Hassan, She explained the basic role played by Palestinian women in various fields despite the difficulties of social and legal difficulties and depriving them of their civil and human rights. In Lebanon, as she is a part of the Palestinian people, she is also deprived from the right to work.
Al-Hassan pointed out that many studies show that the percentage of working Palestinian women in Lebanon is 13%, while the UNRWA study for 2015 indicates that 21.5% of Palestinian refugee women in Lebanon are dependents of their families, Females up to 32%. Pointing out that the percentages indicate that Palestinian refugee women in Lebanon are affected by the restrictions imposed on the employment of Palestinian refugees in general and gender gaps in the employment of women in particular.
Al-Hassan stressed that the occasion of International Women’s Day should be considered as a continuous reminder for struggling to grant women all their rights and eliminating discrimination against women in all fields. She also addressed on the situation of Palestinian women workers who suffer from lack of job opportunities and lack of stability and occupational safety due to seasonal work. They don’t have employment contracts, suffer from low wages, cut off their wages and delayed payments, and face exploitation and discrimination in working conditions.
An intervention by the supervisor of KG of the Palestinian Women Union, Fayza Al-Wannas, stressed on the importance of developing a clear and specific action plan to stand up for the status of women in all fields to be able to continue defend their rights and demand fair wages and working conditions.
Rana Abu Rajab, Director of Gaza School, stressed on the need for women to continue to defend their rights in all fields, especially in the field of work, because what is lost is a right behind the demands, pointing out that the struggle of women is no less than men’s struggle.. Ruud Abdel Rahim, who studied business administration at the university, talked about her experience in the search for work and the challenges and difficulties she faced. The request for employment in many Lebanese institutions and companies was rejected because of her Palestinian nationality, forcing her to work as a nanny in a kindergarten, a profession that does not relate to its studies.
Amina Mansour, a graduate from the Najdeh Vocational training Program, explained the difficulties faced by Palestinian refugees, especially girls, in finding job opportunities, denial of health insurance, and lack of job security. She also spoke of her personal experience of not finding jobs despite From applying to many institutions.
The Lebanese-Palestinian coalition for the right to work campaign for Palestinian refugees in Lebanon organized a seminar entitled “My right to work does not cancel my return” for the students of the Vocational training Center at Association Najdeh in Saida.
The seminar was presented by Mr. Khaled Abu Sweid, coordinator of the campaign in Saida, who explained that the Palestinian refugee in Lebanon suffers from difficult living and economic difficulties due to depriving him of his right to work, which leads to poverty and high rates of unemployment.
Mr. Abu Suwaid pointed out that despite the contacts with many parties, forces and political authorities in Lebanon, which expressed their full sympathy for the suffering of depriving the Palestinian refugees of the right to work, the ministerial statement of the new government never referred to the problem, calling on the new Lebanese government to include the right to work for Palestinian refugees in Lebanon in its agenda.
The seminar stressed on the necessity of mobilizing the Lebanese and Palestinian public opinion to face UNRWA’s cuts and tenable to them because they are the international witness to the bad situation of the Palestinian people.
Educational, Cognitive and recreational activities organized by the kindergartens of Association Najdeh within the Early Learning project under the Learning and Education Program, In order to contribute to improving the cultural, educational and psychological level of the most marginalized groups in the Palestinian societies in Lebanon.
The Early Learning project develops cognitive, linguistic, social and physical abilities and skills of children between the ages 3 – 5 years “.
The learning and education project prepares children to join the primary schools and enables the parents to play a greater role in the educational development and social process of their children through the implementation of a wide range of activities that enhances the communication amongst parents and their children and enables them to address the problems of the child faces in the environment.
This project is an active and a holistic approach of learning, which is based on raising awareness, promoting skills, and increasing creative participatory capacities of children, through: interactive games, sports, theater, reading, trips, awareness regarding the national culture, history, human and child rights, equality, health, etc.
The Women’s Rights Program conducted a training for women beneficiaries’ committees in the Nahr el-Bared camp about anger and feelings management and How to build a healthy family relationship. Art, music and psychodrama techniques were used.
The aim of this training is to involve the Committees of Beneficiaries in awareness-raising activities and to fight gender-based violence in order to achieve effective and positive participation in the society. This training is funded and supported by Norwegian People’s Aid organization.