I was a member of the Palestinian Delegation to the Seeds of Peace Camp in 1994, the second year of the camp and the first year that girls participated. I am also a graduate of the Seeds of Peace Educators’ Course “Expressive Arts; Educational Transformations” that took place at the Camp in 2012.
How have you impacted your community?
I am now the head of the elementary school division at the American International School in Gaza and I am passionate about connecting youth in Gaza with the outside world, particularly given travel constraints they experience.
My project, called “One Family,” is a series of activities that I design and implement at my school to encourage the learning of concepts such as freedom, respect, humanity, justice, cooperation, and peace.
I developed the concept for the project after the last war in Gaza. At the core of “One Family” is the concept of accepting the “other,” especially by learning about unfamiliar cultures through movement and dance.
My view of success for this project is being able to create a peaceful learning environment and cohort of children who understand and accept the “other”—who can forgive and reach out to the world with open arms.
“After the last war in Gaza, children stopped asking each other questions and, instead, started hitting each other. I fear that the children are losing their ethics and turning to a violent side, so I want to help them grow the goodness they have inside. I want them to learn about the concepts of human values like freedom, respect, and accepting the other—to have dreams and build their futures.”