Acre is a city in Northern Israel, on the Mediterranean coast.
ACRE ARAB WOMEN’S ASSOCIATION
Widespread anger and frustration was felt by those of us in the “Jewish-Arab coexistence world” last week upon passage of Israel’s Nation State bill. You – like us – may feel the need to respond with something immediate.
We will continue to address the political ramifications with our partners in Israel, but would like to give you that opportunity for concrete action today.
Hopefully you already know about the wonderful work of our volunteer colleagues in Israel, Road to Recovery, who drive Palestinian patients from border checkpoints to hospital appointments in Israel. There are occasions when the child patient is so ill they cannot return to their home on the West Bank or Gaza the same day. It is then necessary for them and their chaperone to stay in the hospital for additional days or even weeks. This is a lonely, frightening and disorienting experience.
Project Rozana has found a way to improve their situation.
We would like to introduce you to the Acre Arab Women’s Association. AAWA is a not-for-profit organization founded in 1976 to help Arab women improve their status through education and economic independence. They’ve developed a wide range of programs through the years; most recently introducing “Hope, Care and Good Deeds”. This service provides for the needs of Palestinian patients and their companions in Israeli hospitals.
In their initial visits, the Acre women delivered toys, games, clothing and reading material, while also organizing entertainment. Observing the children and their chaperones during that time, they became aware of additional difficulties faced. The women witnessed the emotional toll the endeavor took on family members and caregivers, as well as the physical one. They are now determined to expand their efforts and provide support for those temporarily living at hospitals.
Dr. Mariam Mar’i Ryan, co-founder, AAWA; Board Member Project Rozana, USA, says…
“We must remember that inside an Israeli hospital, as supportive as the system is, patients and companions from the West Bank and Gaza come face-to-face with a dominant society far removed from their own. Our Israeli Arab women volunteers relate to them in a familiar language and a well understood cultural-religious context. The difference it makes to the healing process is significant – this kind of psycho-social support cannot be over emphasized. For many patients and companions it is a lifeline,”
Leveraging their local network, AAWA has been able to arrange only monthly visits to the hospitals. Project Rozana is stepping up to provide modest financial support for additional supplies to be brought more often.
We have been fortunate to receive an $8,000 grant pledge from an Australian donor. However, this grant requires we match it 1:1. In other words, every dollar we raise in the U.S. is worth two dollars that can be sent to AAWA for their work with Palestinian patients and their chaperones.
We ask that you DONATE TODAY to make your contribution providing material and emotional support now for these patients and their caregivers. As the winds of intolerance blow around us, we can stand with these grassroots activists and make a difference.
Chair, Project Rozana USA