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IoPt Palestinain Farmers

Christian Aid in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory (IoPt)

Christian Aid has been working with the poorest people in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory (IoPt) since the early 1950s, when we provided humanitarian relief to Palestinian refugees.

Today, we work with over fifteen Israeli and Palestinian organisations to protect human rights and build a just, lasting peace for all; provide access to services and resources; and facilitate employment and leadership opportunities for Palestinian youth

Our aims
  1. Protect, promote and defend human rights for the protection of all people in IoPt.
  2. Promote greater understanding of the drivers of violence and conflict, explore approaches to tackle violence and build lasting peace and security for all.
  3. Strengthen the resilience of individuals, communities and institutions so they can respond when faced with threats to their lives, land and livelihoods.
  4. Empower young men and women to have greater economic opportunities for a more just and secure future.
In Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory we work on...

Our work in IoPt is part of the Egypt, Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory (EIOPT) Programme. The following areas of expertise are part of the new EIoPt Programme Strategy (2017-2022), which builds on our long-history of work in IoPt to date:

Human rights

Through partners we support individuals to claim their rights, end impunity, lift restrictions and discriminatory policies affecting Palestinians. We support institutions and communities that will make peace possible and hold the government to account for breaches of human rights and international law, with the goal of ending the conflict, occupation and the blockade.

Tackling violence, building peace

We support individuals and communities, in IoPt and abroad, to build understanding of the drivers of poverty and violence, and to promote transparent, just and inclusive approaches to tackle violence and contribute towards building a viable peace and security for all.

Resilience

The ongoing Israeli occupation and the blockade on Gaza has devastated the livelihoods of Palestinians, many of whom are unable to access their land or vital resources, such as water. We continue working to build the resilience of vulnerable communities by developing community-led approaches to ensure they have a greater ability to respond when faced with emergencies and threats to their land, lives and livelihoods. This approach allows communities to take ownership of their own needs and seek solutions that work for them, leading to more sustainable impacts on the ground.

Find out more about our work in Egypt

Humanitarian response

Ongoing insecurity and violence in the region continues to affect the lives of Palestinians and Israelis. When violence erupts, we respond through our local partners to provide immediate humanitarian support. Our partners on the ground continue to provide support in the weeks, months and even years after violence has occurred, enabling communities to recover and rebuild.

Youth empowerment

Young people have been identified as one the most vulnerable groups in the occupied Palestinian territory. Therefore, as part of our new strategy, we will be working with young women and men to develop their skills in leadership, advocacy and education, equipping them to have greater economic opportunities, and to help create a more just and secure future for themselves and their peers.

Where we work

In the occupied Palestinian territory, our partners work in both the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. We also work within the state of Israel, with Palestinian citizens of Israel, and with Israeli organisations working to promote justice and peace.

‘Being involved in the project I have felt a change in myself. It has made me more confident and more able to face challenges with greater confidence.’
Noura Amin Sa’ad
Noura Amin Sa’ad

Noura Amin Sa’ad lives in the occupied Palestinian village of Beit Skariya in the West Bank. Her home is surrounded by illegal Israeli settlements. Noura, and other Palestinians like her, find themselves almost completely cut off from access to essential services such as healthcare and education.

Noura and the community in Beit Skariya have been supported by Christian Aid partner the YMCA Women’s Training Programme to find ways to challenge the Israeli occupation and to build the resilience of individuals faced with threats to their land, lives and livelihoods.

Key achievements

Human Rights

Our partners work to challenge discriminatory laws, practices and decisions affecting Palestinians living under occupation in the West Bank and Gaza, and Palestinian citizens of Israel. In the last year partners have ensured improved benefits and services for marginalised groups within Israel, including access to pre-school education for more than 5,000 Bedouin children, and schools for Arab children in Nazareth Illit. Our partners work is crucial in promoting awareness of the context in IoPt and worldwide, exposing human rights violations and putting pressure on authorities for more accountability through conventional and social media.

Tackling violence, building peace

We support individuals and communities to have a greater understanding of the key drivers of violence and how to use this knowledge to work for a just peace. One of our partners, has developed modules on Tackling Violence and Building Peace (TVBP), and so far nearly 100 students have engaged with these modules guided by facilitators. They cover issues such as peaceful settlement, leadership, basics of human rights, community violence and transformation. The same partner has supported a group of young men and women to develop radio broadcasts on gender based violence, which has 10,000 listeners throughout the Gaza Strip.

Humanitarian

Following the military offensive on the Gaza Strip in 2014, our partners supported communities with a range of emergency responses, including medical treatment for over 125,000 people, restoring clean water and distributing essential food and non-food items to over 150,000 individuals, legal and psycho-social support to over 3,000 people and publishing human rights violations. Through our partners, we continue to give children and young people psychological support to deal with the trauma experienced during the latest conflict and have supported over 2,000 individuals through recovery of livelihoods and reconstruction of homes.

Resilience

We work with partners to build resilient communities, livelihoods and sustain the Palestinian economy and agricultural sector. Through a project in 2016-17 with our partner the YMCA, we worked with 1,162 women in six communities supporting them to begin agricultural work, food processing, and facilitating their access to local and international markets.

A woman from the active Al Aqrabaniya Women's Association in An Nassariya showing off her crops, as part of our work with the YMCA in the Jordan Valley.

A woman from the active Al Aqrabaniya Women's Association in An Nassariya showing off her crops, as part of our work with the YMCA in the Jordan Valley.

Our programmes

The Irish Aid programme in IoPt from 2017 to 2021 focuses on securing human rights and tackling violence, building peace. This will be achieved through the following primary areas of work with our partners:

  • legal and policy mechanisms;
  • human rights education;
  • bearing witness and standing in solidarity
  • and advocacy.
Reports and resources

Modern day slavery: A case study of Israel and the OPT

Download this case study which highlights a type of modern slavery that may exist in supply chains by reference to one of the risk areas -  the Isr

The Middle East quartet: a progress report (2008)

Argues that the EU, Russia, the UN and the US are failing to make adequate progress towards improving the prospects for peace in the region.

The Gaza Strip: a humanitarian implosion

Argues that the situation in Gaza is manmade, completely avoidable and, with the necessary political will, can also be reversed.

One land and many voices: strands of thought about the Holy Land

A brief overview of theological approaches to understanding the situation in the Holy Land.

Losing ground: Israel, poverty and the Palestinians (2003)

This report looks at how and why ordinary Palestinians find themselves in conditions of deepening poverty.

Locked out: Palestinian refugee report (June 2011)

4.8 million Palestinians are living as refugees. This report looks at how addressing this issue will help unlock the peace process.

Lifelines (2007)

Case studies and campaign ideas to mark the start of the 40-year occupation of the West Bank and Gaza strip in 1967.

Humanitarian briefing paper - Gaza (2014)

Outlines our position on the Gaza crisis and our belief that it is caused by decades of political failure and continuous Palestinian displacement.

Facts on the ground: the end of the two-state solution (2004)

The report details the strangulation of the Palestinian economy, as more land is taken from the West Bank for settler roads and settlements.

Call for UK legislation to end trade in Israeli settlement products

Christian Aid and Quakers in Britain unite to urge the UK government to impose a ban on the import of Israeli settlement products.

Contact us
Christian Aid IoPt is based in London, United Kingdom, with two consultants based in-country. Our team is comprised of individuals with significant programmatic, humanitarian, advocacy and policy expertise. We also draw on the expertise of colleagues in other Christian Aid teams across the world.

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