IYF news from the first quarter of 2016

iyf field visitHarnessing Palestinian Capacity to Claim and Advocate for their Rights through Video Evidence in East Jerusalem

Independent Youth Forum (IYF) launched the project of documenting Israeli violations in the Jerusalem area (Hizma and Anata) which will run during the period of January until September 2016. IYF have implemented the project which is funded by the Secretariat of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law.

The targeted and unacknowledged oppression faced by Palestinians in East Jerusalem takes many forms: from formal discriminative legislation and policies to an informal and increasingly hostile cultural climate. The links between these different forms of discrimination are often insidious and therefore go undocumented; and the information that is being captured in this regard is not distributed strategically.

The project aims to change this course and to develop the capacity of Palestinian activists in East Jerusalem to effectively monitor the abuses they face; collect and verify testimonials from victims; and research and document instances of Israeli violence, discrimination, forced displacement and nationalist hate crimes. The project has three primary objectives:

  1. iyf meeting To strengthen local Palestinian abilities to document, verify, and archive visual evidence of systematic human rights abuses suffered by Palestinians living in East Jerusalem, safely and effectively.
  2. To build awareness amongst Palestinians living in east Jerusalem that their struggles do not exist in a vacuum but are rather part of a wider narrative of persecution by Israeli authorities and right wing civilian movements by developing channels for East Jerusalem activists to communicate with Palestinian youth activists in other localities.
  3. To increase international exposure and understanding of the struggles faced by Palestinians living in East Jerusalem, an area often overlooked by international media and solidarity campaigns.

iyf mothers dayIn March, IYF organised a field visit to targeted areas (Himza and Anata). The visit came as a part of international advocacy to show people around the world some of Israelis’ human rights violations against Palestinians; our friend Carly from Woodcraft Folk (UK) and a member in the IFM-SEI presidium participated in this visit. During the visit we had a meeting with the president of the local council in Hizma – Mr. Muafaq Khatib.

IYF also ran a training course as part of the project in order to improve trainees’ capabilities and skills to be able to accomplish financial and administrative tasks.

Discussion about the role of youth in reform and change iyf marathon

On 30 March, IYF conducted a panel discussion about the role of youth in reform and change. The workshop was held at IYF’s office in Ramallah, for IYF members and volunteers. IYF also hosted the executive director of taawon for conflict resolution – Mr. Hani Smerat as a speaker, and our friend Carly from the IFM-SEI Presidium.

Celebrating mother’s day

IYF Volunteers celebrated Mother’s Day with children with intellectual disabilities and other guests in the Star Mountain Rehabilitation Center – Ramallah.

Palestine International Marathon 2016

An IYF team participated in the Palestine International Marathon 2016, which was held in Bethlehem on 1st April for the right to movement.

Article contributed by IYF.