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Galilee Society Newsletter - Issue 25

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  1. 1. The Galilee Society Newsletter In This Issue: Issue 25, May 2007< Rikaz Conducts Training for Surveyors for 2007 < Teva Pharmaceuticals to contribute Funding to Socio-Economic Survey of Palestinians Living Galilee Society’s Unique Breast Cancer Aware- in Israel ness Project< EJC Launches Arab Writers Competition to < Against Collective Punishment: EJC Continues Promote Culturally Specific Environmental to Fight Mekorot Policy of Water Suspensions Education < News in Brief< Naqab Department: Youth-to-Youth Group Takes Leadership Role at Environmental Day Rikaz Conducts Training for Surveyors for 2007 Socio-Economic Survey of Palestinians Living in IsraelDuring 27-30 April, Rikaz conducted its first of A group of 30 trainees attended the event, whichthree trainings for field surveyors for its second was conducted by Rikaz staff and previously trainedcomprehensive socio-economic survey of Palestin- surveyor supervisors. The trainees include veteransians living in Israel, at Galilee Society headquarters from Rikaz’s first socio-economic survey of Pales-in Shefa-‘Amr. tinians in Israel, conducted in 2004. Page 1
  2. 2. The purpose of this training was to prepare survey-ors for collecting data from Palestinian householdsin the survey’s fieldwork. Each trainee was provid-ed with a surveyor manual, which has been refinedbased on the 2004 survey evaluation. In order tosimulate field conditions, trainees participated in su-pervised role-playing situations, where they learnedhow to approach households and to conduct statisti-cally integral interviews. Participants in the Rikaz field surveyor trainingTraining topics included the use of maps to ensure culture, environment, housing, and many others.randomized sampling. Surveyors will work simul-taneously, but in different localities (or “statistical The second surveyor training will be conducted nextareas”), each area taking five days to survey. A to- week in the Naqab region, and the third in the Cen-tal of 3,270 total households will be surveyed from tral region soon thereafter. Fieldwork for the 200778 localities, which include 109 total statistical ar- Socio-Economic Survey will begin at the end of theeas in Israel, including unrecognized villages in the week.Naqab. Rikaz staff and survey supervisors participated in aIn the North region, 1,650 households in 41 lo- training workshop for trainers, conducted by Pales-calities will be surveyed. In the Haifa region, 570 tinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) staff inhouseholds in 11 localities will be surveyed. In the Ramallah, the weekend before the training for sur-Central region, 510 households in 11 localities will veyors. The PCBS also advises Rikaz on technicalbe surveyed. In the Southern region, 540 house- areas such as statistical samples and questionnaires.holds in 15 localities will be surveyed. The 2007 Socio-Economic Survey, a follow-up toIn addition to the importance of the statistical area, Rikaz’s groundbreaking 2004 Socio-Economic Sur-training topics included an in-depth discussion of vey, is part of an E.U. Partnership for Peace-fundedthe questionnaire, which forms the framework of project. The 2004 Socio-Economic Survey con-the survey. In the field, surveyors will conduct in- stituted a unique and complete data source for theterviews based on this questionnaire, and the data socio-economic and other aspects of Palestinian lifeit contains will then be compiled and analyzed by in Israel, including demography, education, culture,Rikaz staff. Surveyed demographics will include health, environment, housing conditions and labor.such indicators as health, education, income, agri- Page 2
  3. 3. EJC Launches Arab Writers Competition to Promote Culturally Specific Environmental EducationA flurry of media attention marked the EJC’s an-nouncement of its Arab Writers competition, whichpromotes culturally specific environmental edu-cation and Arab cultural heritage. EJC staff gavethree radio interviews and at least six Arab languagenewspapers published articles.The EJC’s Arab Writers competition aims to pro-mote culturally specific environmental education bysoliciting Arabic language short stories with envi-ronmental and cultural themes, publishing them ina collection, and distributing the published volumeto schools in Israel. The EJC will also develop anddistribute a syllabus outlining a course of environ-mental study centered on the short story collection.This project was initiated to address the of the lack ofmodern literature in the Arabic language that dealswith environmental issues, observed by the GalileeSociety and its long experience in Arab schools. Anextreme insufficiency of environmental educationin general exists among Arabs in Israel. This forms Illustration from an online newspaper news article about thean important part in revitalizing the Arab cultural competitionheritage among this minority group. Through thisproject, the EJC will also provide a unique opportu-nity for talented Arab environmental writers in Is- Once interested writers submit a proposal to therael while promoting environmental education and EJC, they can then enter a short story into the com-sustainable development in Arab schools. This pro- petition. After the submission deadline on 4 July,gram has been designed to provide environmental the project’s expert committee will judge the sub-literature that is aligned with the Ministry of En- missions and award a first prize of $3,000 to thevironment’s approach to Sustainable Development best story and several lesser cash prizes to other ap-and Education in Israel. plicants. All submissions will receive an award for participation. Acceptable subjects include the im- Page 3
  4. 4. portance of a clean environment, sustainable devel- To promote the competition, the Galilee Societyopment, and related topics. published advertisements in five Arabic language newspapers for one week, as well as directly solicit-The main funder for the Environmental Justice ing certain well known Arabic language writers inCenter in general and for this project in particular is Israel.Misereor, the German Catholic Bishops’ Organiza-tion for Development Cooperation. Naqab Department: Youth-to-Youth Group Takes Leadership Role at Environmental DayFifteen students from the Almostaba group of theNaqab Department’s Youth-to-Youth programhelped organize a high school Environmental Dayon 19 March.The Youth-to-Youth students distributed environ-mental education materials and led groups of stu-dents in garbage removal and environmental hazardsurveying. Youth-to-Youth members guided groupsof students from the Almostaqba school around the Youth-to-Youth members from Almostaqbal attending a plan-outskirts of the village, picking up garbage and lead- ning sessioning discussions on observed environmental problemsin the vicinity, such as water pollutants, toxic materi- Bedouin students to act as peer leaders in the fieldsals near residential areas, and air pollutants. of health and environment, operates in three Naqab schools and involves 54 students in total. Partici-Financial support, in the form of environmental pants attend workshops where they learn such topicseducation materials and t-shirts for the Youth-to- as the importance and meaning of health and en-Youth members, was provided by the Galilee Society vironmental education, the human body (build andNaqab Department. Educational materials included function), infectious diseases and their transmission,public education stickers and pamphlets. hygiene and nutrition, the importance of vaccina- tions, household and road accidents and their pre-The Youth-to-Youth project, which aims to train vention, first aid, the dangers of drugs and smoking, Page 4
  5. 5. hereditary diseases, local environmental hazards in velopment Fund, via the development agency, AC-the area, and good environmental practice. SUR. Aiming to promote women’s participation in development, this project provides women’s healthThe Youth-to-Youth project is a component of a leadership training, women’s health/first aid educa-larger Galilee Society’s project, entitled, “Programs tion, peer health education, campaigns of legal advo-for Strengthening Health and Education in the cacy on behalf of Bedouin communities, and publicBedouin Unrecognized Villages in the Naqab,” health and environment campaigns.which is financed by the Spanish Government’s De- Teva Pharmaceuticals to contribute Funding to Galilee Society’s Unique Breast Cancer Awareness ProjectIsrael-based Teva Pharmaceuticals Industry, providing a grant to a Galilee Society project toimplement an Arabic-language public educationcampaign that will promote breast cancer awarenessamong Israel’s Arab population.This alliance demonstrates an important relation-ship between the Galilee Society and an interna-tional corporation, and widens our donor base to A mammography, a procedure that has been proven to reduceinclude business as well as foundation and govern- mortality from breast cancerment funding. It also shows Teva’s commitment tocommunity relations in general and to the Arab sec-tor in particular. As a result of these problems, breast cancer, the lead- ing cause of cancer mortality in Israeli women, isTeva funds will contribute to the production of a na- increasing at a faster rate among Arab women, ac-tional poster campaign and the production of two cording to the Israeli Center for Disease ControlArabic-language educational films on breast can- (ICDC) and the Israeli Central Bureau of Statisticscer. The posters will be posted throughout Israel (CBS). This disparity is, in part, due to the lack ofand will be printed in Arabic and therefore aimed early detection of breast cancer amongst Palestinianat the Arab community in Israel. A culturally sensi- women, which results from a lack of health knowl-tive issue, breast cancer is not openly discussed in edge and unavailability of the necessary services forthe Arab society, resulting in low levels of awareness early prognosis. Arab health educators in Israel todayand women not attending regular checks and taking lack the appropriate tools for breast cancer trainingpreventive action. and awareness-raising among women in their com- Page 5
  6. 6. munity. Although extensive materials exist in He- Society’s extensive network, including speakers andbrew, a lack of training and educational materials ex- participants from many years of health conferencesists for the Arab minority in their native language. and study days, Galilee Society members and board members, Israeli Knesset members, and Ministry ofIn order to address this dearth of culturally specific Health decision makers. The Galilee Society mayhealth information and the resultant high rates of also arrange a public viewing of the film and invitebreast cancer, this project will design, print, and dis- carefully selected health posters drawing attention to the issue of breastcancer, the dangers of the disease as well as the im- The educational film for Arab women will be dis-portance of checks and prevention. tributed to health educators throughout the country. It will also be distributed to a wide range of womenIn addition, the project will create two films, the first of all ages that participate in the Galilee Society’sfilm being targeted at healthcare professionals, and other projects. These other projects include women’sthe second film at Arab women. Both films will fur- health education and women’s leadership in thether public knowledge about breast cancer in a cul- Naqab, diabetes and cardiovascular disease project,turally specific and sensitive manner. and female high school students in our HIV/AIDS project. In addition, this film will be sent to women’sFilm as a visual tool is not only important in the NGOs and civil society organizations throughoutprocess of health education and training, but also Israel, as well as Kupot Holim and Hospitals, to en-crucial for raising the awareness of breast cancer courage distribution among patients.among Arab women more generally. In many cases, Discussions held between the Galilee Society andand in particular among the older generation, Arab Teva have suggested the possibility of airing the filmswomen inside Israel do not know Hebrew at all or during Ramadan, when Arab families traditionallydo not master it to the level needed to grasp medical gather and often watch television together. Thisadvice or to be able to read leaflets and brochures in possibility indicates an enormous potential of theseHebrew. In addition, the level of illiteracy among films to reach both Arab women in Israel as well as aBedouin women in the south of Israel is even higher much wider audience across the Arab world.than Arab women in the rest of Israel. This situa-tion risks leaving Arab women in a position where Through this campaign the Galilee Society hopes tothey do not have access to the knowledge and infor- encourage a more open debate on the issue of breastmation needed to prevent or discover the disease in cancer among Arab women in Israel and to make thetime. community more aware of the disease. This is aimed to result in more women taking action towards pre-The educational film for Arab health professionals venting the disease or detecting it early on.will be promoted and distributed using the Galilee Page 6
  7. 7. Against Collective Punishment: EJC Continues to Fight Mekorot Policy of Water SuspensionsIn its latest efforts to prevent the Israeli Nationalwater utility, Mekorot, from continuing to suspendwater services to entire Arab villages as punishmentfor non-paying individuals, the Environmental Jus-tice Center (EJC) has renewed its advocacy efforts.In a letter sent to the General Director of Mekorot,the Minister of Interior Affairs, the Chairman ofthe Committee for Interior Affairs and the Envi-ronment, and the government Water Authority, theEJC argued that the suspension of water to entireArab villages constitutes a humanitarian violation These efforts are the latest in a long line of Galileethat affects hospitals, schools, and both paying and Society efforts to end this unfair policy. In August ofnonpaying citizens. That these actions affect both 2004, following an EJC petition to the Israeli Highoffenders as well as innocent citizens equally con- Court of Justice, the Knesset adopted an amendmentstitutes disproportionate and collective punishment, to the Water and Sewage Corporations Law, whichwhich is illegal under Israeli law. The EJC maintains allowed Mekorot to cut water to municipalities whoin this letter that such actions are in breach of the have paid more than 80% of their water bill.basic right to water, which forms part of the depart-ment’s Charter of Environmental Justice. Following this 2004 amendment, the High Court issued a decision on 19 August 2004 asking theRecently, Ofir Paz Pines, the Chairman of the Com- plaintiff, the Galilee Society, to withdraw its petitionmittee for Interior Affairs and the Environment against Mekorot in light of the amendment, whichforwarded the EJC correspondence to the General changes the normative basis of the petition.Director of the Ministry of Interior Affairs, who isresponsible for the national water infrastructure in However, despite the positive step of the 2004Israel. Paz Pines called on the General Director to amendment, many Arab villages continue to suffertake action and asked what his plans were to alter from frequent water stoppages as a result of the in-this discriminatory policy. Paz Pines also forwarded ability of local authorities to pay the required 80%.the letter to Mekorot, sustaining the EJC’s humani- Routinely, entire Arab villages, such as Rameh andtarian, disproportionate, and collective punishment Kafr-Kanna, are deprived of water and are forced toarguments. stockpile tap water and buy bottled water for essen- Page 7
  8. 8. tial tasks like preparing food and flushing the toilet. most no Arab local authority is able to pay the 80% required, and thus there is no guarantee that Me-The Galilee Society responded to the High Court korot will not cut off water to Arab towns and vil-decision by arguing that this amendment is not an lages.adequate response to the citizens it represents, as al- News in BriefU.S. Ambassador Dinner Brings Together Breast Cancer Organization andGalilee Society RepresentativesGalilee Society General Director Dr. Basel Ghattas formation about breast health to more women. Thisattended a dinner hosted by the U.S. Ambassador in raised awareness will result in greater communityMarch and met with Nancy Brinker, founder of the sensitivity to women’s special health needs and aSusan G. Komen for the Cure foundation, a Gali- better quality of life for victims of breast cancer. Ourlee Society breast cancer project funder. Richard holistic approach to health care includes impactingH. Jones, the U.S. Ambassador to Israel, hosted the these levels via complementary activities: awarenessfunction. raising and education, advocacy, service provision, research and empowerment. Activities include con-The Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation is the ducting a Training Course, Advocacy activities andlargest funder to the Galilee Society project, “Breast a Study Day and preparing culturally specific pub-Cancer Awareness Campaign,” which aims to raise lications.awareness about breast cancer amongst Palestinian Susan G. Komen for the Cure, headquartered inwomen throughout Israel. It will train Palestinian Dallas, Texas, is dedicated to education and researchwomen to become health leaders, performing self- about causes, treatment, and the search for a cure tochecks and checks on others, and distributing in- breast cancer.Delegation from Italian Olive Products Consortium Visits Al-MaissamRepresentatives from a joint Italian, Israeli, and Pal- Mr. Gianni Toma, Mr. Carlo Mileti, and Mr. Sergioestinian trade project focusing on developing markets Bidetti, of Lecce, Italy, learned about Al-Maissam’sfor olive-based products visited Al-Maissam on 23 research and educational activities as well as GalileeMarch to learn about Galilee Society activities and to Society projects during a three-hour tour of the Al-discuss Al-Maissam’s role in the trade project. Maissam Medicinal Plants Center. Page 8
  9. 9. Drawing on its long history of collaboration and itsextensive networks of contacts, Al-Maissam’s role inthe joint project is to coordinate activities and to im-prove communications between the Israeli, Palestin-ian, and Italian partners.The project’s overall objective is to promote olive-and olive wood-based products in the Mediterra-nean area. The project’s secondary object is to devel-op a cross-cultural dialogue of peaceful cooperation Members of the Italian delegation with Dr. Naim Karim, Gali-between Italy, Israel, and Palestine. lee Society General Program DirectorBritish Charity Focusing on Children in Israel and Palestine Names GalileeSociety “Preferred Partner”Representatives from Children of Peace, a British op a coalition of local partners providing services tonon-governmental organization focusing on Pales- children in Israel and Palestine.tinian and Israeli children, visited the Galilee Soci- As a consequence of their visit to the Galilee So-ety headquarters in Shefa-‘Amr in March during a ciety, where they heard about a planned project tofact finding visit among NGOs that work with chil- empower Arab youth to make informed decisionsdren in Israel and the West Bank. regarding their health, they have named the Galilee Society a “preferred partner”, which confers privileg-Children of Peace Secretary John Guyatt, Treasurer es in the case that Children of Peace receives fund-Claire Packham, and Administrator Nicole Prit- ing to extend to its partners.chard Smith, visited the Galilee Society as part of a The proposed Galilee Society project will compileweeklong tour in Israel and in Palestine, where they data on Arab adolescent health knowledge, attitudes,met with 13 different Israeli and Palestinian NGOs. and practices, provide outreach to schools, and im-The purpose of the tour, organized by their Middle prove networking among community advocacy andEast representative, Kassim Baddarni, was to devel- healthcare provider organizations. Page 9
  10. 10. Naqab Department: Health Day in Bedouin Village School Promotes Safety andHealthy Life DecisionsThe Naqab Department conducted a health day atthe high school in the Bedouin village of Lagiyya on21 March to promote household safety and healthylife decisions.Dr. Salim Sane’, Naqab Department Strategic Pro-gram Director, and Safa Al Ataouna, Health Educa-tor, conducted activities for 360 adolescent students.Activities included lectures for children with inter-active demonstrations on the use of healthful, tradi- Children learning proper toothbrushing techniques during thetional Bedouin plants. Lagiyya Health DayStudents were instructed to bring certain locally ervation and cultivation of preparation of local me-grown plants, which Naqab Department staff used dicinal herbs stems from the need to preserve andto make tea for the students. Staff used the activ- revitalize the rich Palestinian Arab heritage of ex-ity to illustrate the value and availability of natural, pertise in this area. As a result of this conviction, thetraditional foods as a way of promoting health and Galilee Society established the first botanical gardencultural awareness. and plant resource center for traditional medicinal plants in the Middle East, the Al-Maissam Medici-In addition to activities for students, Naqab Depart- nal Plants Center for Research & Education.ment staff conducted lectures for teachers on the Funded primarily by the Israeli Ministry of Science,value and availability of Bedouin traditional plants Al-Maissam combines educational activities, scien-and medicines. tific research and ecotourism. It has experience in the preservation and cultivation of local medicinalNaqab Department staff also distributed more than herbs in addition to knowledge of their medicinal1000 Galilee Society-made brochures on healthy uses. Its facility contains a laboratory, administrationlifestyles, the health benefits locally grown plants, offices, a lecture hall, a botanical garden, classes, al-and avoiding household accidents. gae and fishponds, an aviary for local domestic and wild birds, and an apiary for beehives.The Galilee Society’s efforts to promote the pres- Page 10
  11. 11. R&D Center: American Presents Workshop on Medical Research MethodologyMr. Eric Manheimer, Cochrane Collaboration chrane Statistical Methods framework.Complementary Medicine Field Administrator atthe Center for Integrative Medicine at the Univer- The lecture, entitled “Instructions for preparing a re-sity of Maryland School of Medicine, conducted a view in the Cochrane Reviewer’s Handbook,” wasworkshop at the R&D Center on 16 April outlining well attended by R&D Center scientists and staff.the methodology for medical research in the Co-German Catholic Aid Organization and Donor to the EJC IntroducesRepresentative of New Human Rights Joint Initiative to The Galilee SocietyRepresentatives from Misereor, the German Catho- policy is equally fair to both Israelis and Palestinians.lic Bishops’ Organization For Development Co- She was especially interested to hear about the Gali-operation, a donor to the Environmental Justice lee Society’s experience with the Palestinian minor-Center, visited the Galilee Society headquarters in ity in Israel and of certain examples of discrimina-Shefa-‘Amr on 28 April. tory policies. Dr. Haarmann and Dr. Pfestroff also discussed other Galilee Society activities and initia-Dr. Maria Haarmann, of Misereor’s Africa and tives, as well as ways of developing the relationshipMiddle East Department, introduced Dr. Christina between Misereor and the Galilee Society.Pfestroff, who is working on a new joint initiativeon human rights and humanitarian law for Misereor Misereor, which is based in Aachen, Germany, is aand EED (Church Development Service (Evange- member of CIDSE, an alliance of 15 Catholic de-lischer Entwicklungsdienst). Part of Dr. Pfestroff ’s velopment organizations from Europe and Northrole is to assess the opportunities that will ensure EU America. Page 11
  12. 12. How to Support the Galilee SocietyHelp achieve equitable health, environmental, and socio-economic conditions and development opportuni-ties for Palestinian Arab citizens of Israel by supporting the Galilee Society.How to Donate to the Galilee SocietyTax-Exempt DonationsIn order to facilitate giving, the Galilee Society has recently received tax-exempt status in the United States,via the Friends of the Galilee Society. To donate in the United States, please make checks payable to theFriends of the Galilee Society and send them to:Dr. Shouki KassisChair, Board of Directors7 Lee Road, Audubon, PA 19403United Stateskassis25@comcast.netTel: +1 610 662 3693Bank transfers to the Friends of the Galilee Society can be made to the following account:Account Name: Friends of the Galilee SocietyBank Name: PNC BankBranch: Audubon Village Shopping CenterAccount Number: 86-0943-9642Please inform Friends of the Galilee Society of your DonationsTo donate to the Galilee Society directly, please send checks (in any currency) payable to the Galilee Societyat: Page 12
  13. 13. P.O. Box 330Shefa-Amr, 20200IsraelAlternatively, bank transfers (in any currency) can be made directly to the Galilee Society’s bank account:Account Number: 9800Bank Name: Bank HapoalimBranch Number: 731Bank Address: Jabour Street, Shefa-Amr 20200 IsraelSWIFT Code: POALILITPlease inform us of your donation at Galilee Society - The Arab National Society for Health Research and Services is a leading disk utility commu-nity-based Arab NGO. The overriding goal of the Galilee Society is the achievement of equitable health and socio-economic conditions for the Palestinian citizens of Israel.The Galilee SocietyP.O. Box 330, Shefa-Amr 20200, IsraelTel.: +972 4 986 1171Fax: +972 4 986 1173Email: Page 13