Project, Objectives and Preparation

Saturday 26 December 2009
popularity : 93%

Here was our project : cultural exchange and solidarity with young Palestinians living in Aida refugee camp (near Bethlehem), who take part in the socio-cultural activities organised by Al-Rowwad Association.

Our primary objective was to experience a trip at the opposite of a consumption tourism, which required a social, cultural and intellectual involvement with the idea of discovering a different cultrure and sharing the everyday life of the people, bringing into play values of peace and solidarity through developing a creative socio-cultural project (producing an eyewitness testimony in the form of a web-site and a docu-film), becoming aware of the complex reality of the israelo-palestinian conflict and, of course, experiencing self-managed group-life.

Such a trip required serious preparation. We took part in different kinds of activities such as :

- training workshops about the history of the conflict and its consquences on the everyday life of the Palestinians(partners : Marianne Blume et Nadia Farkh (ABP), Henri Wajnblum (UPJB)

- tround tables (partners : "Taayoush"- Leila Shahid (General Delegate of la Palestine for EU), Michel Warschawski (Founder of the Alternative Information Center in Jerusalem), and IHECS - Abdelfattah Abu-Srour (Director of Al-Rowwad Center in Aïda), Tal Dor (from the Israeli Association Zochrot), Francis Maertens (anthropologue), Matthias Burchard (Director of UNRWA in Geneva)

- meetings with friends and acquaintances who have travelled to and in Palestine : Martine, (volunteer in Aïda camp for 5 years), Marianne Blume, (who taught French in Gaza for 10 years), Jean-François (photographer) et Saïf (member of a NGO working on food safety and decent work)

- cultural activities together with les Halles de Schaerbeek (Masarat festival), the Le Public et De Poche theatres : videos et photos exhibitions (Rula halawani - "Intimate Narratives"), theatre plays ("Promised lands" - "My name is Rachel Corrie"), films ("For only one of my two eyes", Avi Mograbi, "Le sel de la mer", Annemarie Jacir, "Valse with Bachir",.......), concert ("Al- Kamandjati" Bozar)

- initiation workshops : photo et video techniques (partner : Philippe Hubot (GSARA), and the Arab language.


- History of the conflict and its consequences on the everyday life of the Palestinians : Marianne Blume, Nadia Farkh and Henri Wajnblum

- Taayoush : Leila Shahid, Michel Warschawski, Abdelfattah Abu-Srour, Tal Dor, Francis Maertens and Matthias Burchard

- Cultural activities :

  • photo exhibition : Rula Halawani
  • video installation "Intimate Narratives"
  • theatre "Promised Lands"
  • theatre "My name is Rachel Corrie"
  • film "For only one of my two eyes", Avi Mograbi
  • film "Le sel de la mer", Annemarie Jacir
  • film "Valse with Bachir"
  • concert "Al- Kamandjati"

- Testimonies :

  • Martine (Aida camp) and Marianne Blume (Gaza)
  • Jean-François and Saïf

- Ateliers :

  • initiation to photo and vide techniques : Philippe Hubot
  • initiation to the Arab language