EAPPI Standing in Solidarity with NGO’s and other Organizations/Projects
Wi’am Palestinian Conflict Resolution Centre
Another EA and I had a very insightful meeting with Zoughbi, the founder of this organization and Usama, a coordinator of some programs. Wi’am is a grassroots organization established in Bethlehem in 1995. Wi’am aims to improve the quality of relationships and to promote peace and reconciliation in the community. It joins other organizations and strives to build a society based on democratic norms and values. It is a place for conflict transformation, restorative justice and mediation.
Wi’am is also a community center for peace building, sustainable development, empowerment and hope. The view from the yard reflects the culture; visible are the wall, a masque, church and in the far right settlements.
Knowing that peacemaking in human relationships is a spiritual effort. Wi’am asks for your active prayer support for peace and justice in your families, during your own personal reflection time or in your worshipping communities.
Wi’am does not charge for their services and depends on donors for all their projects. Sulha, their brochure says, is the traditional Arabic form of mediation. As a conflict emerges, mediators respond by going to the scene of the conflict and listen to both parties. Their mission is to bring the conflicting parties together while saving face, to redress the wrong, and to restore relationship. Drinking coffee is the crowning of the ceremony where both parties will drink together, and shake hands after bridging the relationship. The more conflicts they resolve, the more coffee they drink. I think I could like working in this kind of conflict resolution.
The EA who visited when I did has training in conflict resolution and plans are under way for a presentation to the staff or participants. The center has an active women’s group and I will be involved with them in gender equality issues.
The center states, we do not want you to be pro-Palestinian or Pro-Israeli, we need you to be pro-justice and work for the liberation of all people! To find out how you can help this organization, go to: www.alaslah.org.