Sunday, August 12, 2007

2 -summer camp & Al-Amal Hospital, Jenin

Today 2 spanish volunteers and I were at the summer camp for the children. It goes on between 9am-1pam. The older children wrote a story together about their every day life and then draw picture to it. Many of the pictures show how deep they are affected by the occupation. The younger children were in another grouop and we painted their faces. After that some of learned some dubka dancing played different games.

The Cultural Centre are looking for places and people who would like to make an art exhibition with the pictures that the children have made. The pictures have been shown in Scotland before.
They are also looking for places, preferable Fair Trade shops, who would like to sell hand made things (wallets, bags, clothes, scarfs, pottery etc.) which the women are making.
So please contact me if you have any ideas of places who can be interested in anything of this.

In the afternoon Yousef took us to the Al-Amal Hospital, which is run by a NGO called Patient's Friend Society(PFS). They are a part of the twinning link with Tower Hamlet, London, but are also intersted in twinning with Nottingham.
PFS was estblished in 1972and it was the first NGO to start health activities in the Jenin area. It is the 2nd biggest hospital in Jenin with different specialized clinics and a mobile clinic which cover villages around the city.
PSF also run different programs connected to the hospital like Al-Amal School for mentally handicapped children, Al-Amal polyclinic, Integration of disbled children in the national eduscation system, Al-Amal Maternity Hospital, gynecology and obsterics, Health education and promotion program, and Community based rehabilitation.
Jenin is considered to be one of the most underserved areas in Palestine with a high poverty level. The disability rate is 2%, which is one of the highest in the West Bank. The hospital bed ratio is 0,5bed/1000n inhabitant. The average ratio in Palestine is 1,3bed/1000 habitant. The health related infrastructure is undeveloped, especially in the rural areas that have been badly affected by the apartheid isolation wall surrounding them from three sides.

The hospital's economic situation is (not suprisingly) in a very bad state, and they were really affected when the European countries and Us withdraw their financial support one and a half year ago. (after Hamas won the democratic election as you probably know).

For the twinning group in notts:
I discussed with some of the doctors about how a twinning link could be helpful for them. This is what they said:
They are looking for financial support to be able to get more equipment, repair the old equipment, to do renovations, repair the ambulances and to buy medecine. Also they would be interested in having volunteers with the required education and knowledge. Especially to the school for the handicapped children but also to the hospital. Maybe there can be an exchange of medical students in Jenin and Uk. I said that as far as I know there are no health sector involved in the twinning project yet, but that I would report it to the group so you can discuss it.

C u another day.

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