WPHF is supporting local women’s organizations in Palestine to prevent conflict, strengthen women’s economic resilience and active participation in peacebuilding and respond to COVID-19 on the front lines.
In Palestine, WPHF is channeling financing to local women’s organizations working to prevent conflict and enhance women’s meaningful participation in peacebuilding and economic recovery efforts across the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, with a special focus on Hebron Governorate.
WPHF is also supporting local civil society organizations in Palestine to respond to and sustain their efforts in the face of the COVID-19 global pandemic.
WPHF has supported 12 projects implemented by 20 women-led and women’s rights civil society organizations in Palestine:
- Roles for Social Change Association (ADWAR) on a project to build the capacity of women’s committees established in Hebron to highlight the needs of marginalized women, advocate for their economic empowerment, enhance their effective participation in peacebuilding and provide them with legal and psychosocial support. This project, through various trainings and capacity building sessions, will help equip these committees with the adequate knowledge and skills to end and prevent conflict, enhance accountability mechanisms, dialogue, and peaceful participation as well as strengthen national and international reporting and response systems.
- Arab Education Initiative (AEI) – together with the Women’s Activity Association (Hebron) – on a project to develop and implement an early warning system supported by a mediator system, composed of local women from various ages and backgrounds. As a result of the project, women participants will have increased capacity to develop and apply the early warning system and develop effective community responses to conflict.
- The Palestinian Association for Empowerment and Local Development (REFORM) – together with the Rural Women’s Development Society (RWDS) – on a project to increase women’s participation in decision-making processes and promote the roles of both women and men building safe and secure communities through the establishment of early warning and response systems to collect, process, and analyze information about potential conflict situations, including domestic violence, political conflicts (settlements), social conflicts (tribal/hamulaat), favoritism (in regards to lack of access to services) and neighboring (e.g. land disputes), while referring them to local women mediators.
Peacebuilding and Recovery
- Union of Agricultural Work Committee (UAWC) on a project to break down barriers preventing women from fully participating in their community’s political and economic life. The project will support women from marginalized communities by raising awareness of their rights and how they can be actors of change in their communities through the establishment of an online participatory platform where women will exchange their experience on local political, social, economic, and gender issues.
- YMCA East Jerusalem (YMCA) on a project to enhance the resilience of women with disabilities and accelerate their socio-economic recovery by providing them with equitable employment opportunities. The project will engage with grassroots community based organizations (CBOs) to raise women with disabilities (WWDs)’ awareness of their rights through trainings as well as increase local communities’ awareness of their needs. CBO members will be trained on UNSCR 1325 and their roles in peacebuilding processes as advocates and representatives for WWDs.
- YWCA of Palestine (YWCA) on a project to increase the resilience and participation of young women, building the capacity of local women CBOs in eight disadvantaged areas of Hebron to better engage with young women within their structures and provide them with income-generating opportunities to improve their economic and social status. Participants will be trained on business management and encouraged to create joint income-generating projects that will be supported by sub-grants through the project.
- Juzoor for Health and Social Development (JUZOOR) – together with the Palestinian Food Industries Union and Al Haram Women’s Association – on a project to enhance women’s participation in peacebuilding through empowering them economically and politically by building their leadership capacities. In alignment with the Palestinian NAP1325, the targeted women will also be provided with training on hygiene, safety in the workplace, sexual and reproductive health and rights, as well as gender equality.
- Palestinian Vision (Pal-Vision) on a project to enhance women’s participation in peacebuilding efforts in Hebron by increasing their contributions to their community’s economic life. The project works on providing the most vulnerable and marginalized women in the region with business coaching and trainings on management, marketing, and product diversification, as well as offer financial and organizational support to women with new micro-business projects and initiatives such as helping them prepare business plans, facilitate their access to credit, and mentoring them throughout the establishment of their businesses.
- Psycho-social Counselling Center for Women (PSCCW) – together with the Psycho-social counselling center for women, Al Aroub Women’s Center, Al Kamel Women’s Center, The Women’s Association in Yatta and Sharek Community Center in Hebron H2 – on a project to enhance young women’s resilience, build their capacities, and reduce poverty among female-headed households. The project will train local community-based organizations’ members and groups of young activist women on the use of social media as a tool to advocate for women’s rights, as well as increase their knowledge of gender equality, women’s economic empowerment, and women’s participation in decision-making.
WPHF COVID-19 ERW Partners: Responding to and Surviving COVID-19 in Crisis Settings
- The Culture and Free Thought Association (CFTA) together with 10 CBOs on a joint project to build the capacity and provide financial support to women-headed households across the Gaza Strip who are at risk of losing their small businesses due to the COVID-19 related economic crisis. The project will also provide women and girls, including women and girls with disabilities, with a full package of SRHR services.
- Mother’s School Society on a project to help women business owners who are economically affected by the COVID-19 crisis to maintain their activities by providing them with cash grants, scheduling one-on-one counseling sessions and organizing trainings on management, accounting and online-selling.
- Women’s Affairs Center (WAC) – together with Union of Health Work Committees-Gaza Strip (UHWC) – on a project to build the capacities of community-based organizations in COVID-19 protective measures as well as in the detection, treatment and referral of vulnerable women and girls. The project raises the awareness of Palestinian women on the key role they can play in COVID-19 response and beyond by familiarizing them with Palestine’s COVID-19 response plan and the WPS agenda. The project also facilitates women’s and girls’ access to key emergency health services, particularly through the distribution of dignity kits and home visits, provides them with economic support – notably through cash transfers – and prevents and responds to cases of SGBV through psychosocial hotlines and legal counseling.
Explore the Full List of WPHF COVID-19 Emergency Response Window Partners Around the WorldCOVID-19 Emergency Response Window Projects
The impact of five decades of Israeli military occupation of the West Bank, the illegal annexation of East Jerusalem, and the over a decade long blockade of Gaza have thwarted state-building and development efforts and left more than 2.45 million Palestinians in dire need of humanitarian assistance. Throughout the last year the situation in Palestine was marked by multiple overlapping crises from the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic fallouts to the deterioration in Israeli-Palestinian relations. In January 2021, the announcement of the first Palestinian elections since 2006 sparked hope for renewed and representative institutions, but their subsequent postponement in April only sharpened the division and frustration among the population.
Despite the horrendous impacts of occupation on all Palestinians, women have been among the most disadvantaged populations by the current situation, as they face multiple layers of discrimination and vulnerability. Traditional norms and patriarchal beliefs further impede women and girls from fully exercising their rights and unleashing their potential. As with most of the world, the COVID-19 global pandemic has disproportionately affected Palestinian women and girls. They were most at risk of losing their sources of income, burdened with additional unpaid care work, suffered barriers to essential services (such as health, protection, security) and experienced heightened cases of domestic violence.
In Palestine, the WPHF aims to increase the participation of women in political decision making, give voice to their protection concerns, address and prevent the root causes of conflict and strengthen their participation in peacebuilding and economic resilience efforts across the country.