Morgan Bach, our 2nd visiting teacher in Al Aqaba Village, is now in Michigan starting her U.S. speaking tour! We sent her there to attend the Students for Justice in Palestine conference. Today she is speaking at the First Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Ann Arbor, standing-in for Palestinian nonviolence leader Iyad Burnat who was prevented from entering Jordan despite holding a U.S. Visa.
The wonderful travel stipend you provided through your donation to this program brought Morgan to Al Aqaba Village where she spent eight months volunteering as teacher, writer, and aspiring filmmaker (remarkable films). A graduate of Whitman College, she was in New Orleans working as a teacher when she found Al Aqaba through Rebuilding Alliance’s campaign to save the kindergarten that hundreds of Americans helped build.
160 children now attend our kindergarten! It keeps Al Aqaba Village standing, attracting new investment despite demolition orders — we hope that is a positive model that audiences will want to explore and support. Morgan will share her stories, photos and films to introduce Al Aqaba and discuss Area C, the 62% of the West Bank controlled solely by Israel where over 12,000 demolition orders have been issued by the Israeli Army to Palestinian livelihood structures build on their own land. Morgan will describe new interfaith building projects there, and introduce a new way to reach Congress here, on behalf of 149 Palestinian towns at-risk in Area C.
Here are Morgan's destinations:
Please give me a call at 650 440-9667 if you would like to gather your friends and organize a house party or speaking event to hear this dynamic speaker!
We have some good news! We have been notified by our friends at Playgrounds for Palestine that they will provide a grant to allows us to begin construction of a third Abir’s Garden Playground right away. Ideally, we would like to use your donations to cover the construction and meeting expenses of Combatants for Peace who will be coming together for this construction.
The “Combatants for Peace” movement was started jointly by Palestinians and Israelis, who have taken an active part in the cycle of violence; Israelis as soldiers in the Israeli army (IDF) and Palestinians as part of the violent struggle for Palestinian freedom. After brandishing weapons for so many years, and having seen one another only through weapon sights, they decided to put down their guns, and to fight for peace. Rebuilding Alliance joined when a child, Abir Aramin, was killed by an Israeli soldier's rubber-coated steel bullet. She was the daughter of CfP founder, Bassam Aramin and his wife Salwa. Together we created Abir's Garden: a Safe Place to Grow as a way to build good in memory of this beautiful child.
Thanks to your help, this will be our 3rd Abir's Garden playground! Our first playground was at Abir's school in Anata East Jerusalem. The next was in Al Samoa Simya in the south of the West Bank. This time we are asking Combatants for Peace to go north — and that means we'll be working with CfP's Northern team for this project. We have a site in mind: right next the Al Aqaba Kindergarten, in a village at risk of demolition in Area C. 'God is in the details' so we will be updating the project description as soon as the new plans are confirmed. More info coming soon!
Please note, GlobalGiving.org is holding their Bonus Matching Grant day on Tuesday Oct. 16th starting at 9:01pm Pacific time. They will give away $50,000 and they way this competition has been going, we expect that to happen in the first 2 hours. If you would like to give, please set your clock — GG will match your donation by 30%.
I am writing to convey very positive news about our 1st Palestinian Birthing Center-Jordan Valley project! Thanks to your support, implementation of this project is now underway!
Last month, Donna Baranski-Walker, founder and executive director of Rebuilding Alliance, met with Jim Stunkel, Project Lead from Assist International, the organization that will provide the birthing center equipment and training. Donna and Jim then developed a Memorandum of Understanding for all the stakeholders in the project and connected with the Rotary Club of Ramallah (our project partners) to work through details. Here are all the tasks that must be addressed:
Below are some pictures of the medical clinic, along with Kali’s measurements of the clinic. We at Rebuilding Alliance are excited to see photos of where the clinic will be located and are happy to share them with you! Thank you again for supporting this project!