By Josie Shields-Stromsness - Program Director, Middle East Children's Alliance
I just came back from another inspiring visit to the Masara Cafeteria! I sat with Um Hassan over tea this morning and heard all about the last few months in their kitchen. Here are a few of the highlights:
The women are now able to make and serve warm felafel sandwiches for children! This new nutritious snack made from garbanzo beans is only possible thanks to your support.
They've increased the quantity of meat pies because the demand is so high. Um Hassan tells me many kids know ahead of time which days there will be meat pies and they come to school early (starting around 6:30am!) to get a meat pie fresh out of the oven.
On the occassion of Universal Children's Day (November 20), the women cooked a special breakfast for children in the Masara village kindergarten and hosted the Bethlehem governor to highlight the difficult situation in the village.
Their new equipment including a stove with four burners, a second oven, and a new mixer and juicer are all being put to good use!
The bad news is that lately there is a water shortage in the village. Sadly this is common in the West Bank where there is a healthy aquifer but Israel controls all water resources and only allows Palestinians to use approximately 10% of the available water. (You can learn more about Palestinian water rights through the water coalition that we work with: http://ewash.org/). For the women cooking in Masara, water is an absolute necessity so we are going to help them to buy and install a second water tank on the roof of the cafeteria.
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