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Addressing the Impact of House Demolitions on Palestinian Children & Families

BROKEN HOMES

Palestinian boys search the rubble of dozens of houses demolished by the Israeli army on the border between Rafah and Egypt on June 2, 2004. PHOTO/ Apollo images.

Broken Homes: Addressing the Impact of House Demolitions on Palestinian Children & Families ©All rights reserved April 2009 Issued by Palestinian Counselling Centre Beit Hanina-entrance to the Garden of Eden P.O. Box: 17402, Jerusalem Telephone: 00972-2-6562272 or 00972-2-6562627 Fax: 00972-2-6562271 E-mail: pcc@palnet.com Save the Children UK P.O. Box: 18117, Jerusalem 91180 Telephone: 00972-2-5838594 Fax: 00972-2-5838595 www.savethechildren.org.uk Welfare Association P.O. Box: 25204, Jerusalem Telephone: 00972-2-2415130 Fax: 00972-2-2975984 www.welfare-association.org Cover image: A Palestinian child stands in a camp for Palestinians displaced in Gaza in Israel’s Dec. ‘08 - Jan. ‘09 offensive. Two hundred and fifty families live in this camp, where Save the Children established a childfriendly space as part of its program. Credit: O. Damo Designed by: Marwan Hamad, InterTech, Ramallah

Palestinian Counselling Centre The Palestinian Counselling Centre (PCC) was established by a group of psychologists, sociologists and educators in 1983 to work towards improving and developing mental health and services in Palestine. The Centre began operating voluntarily by working in schools to increase awareness of the importance of counselling and intervention for children exposed to political abuse and violence. Public services in the field of mental health were at that time confined to Bethlehem’s mental hospital, which treats the seriously mentally ill, as well as private clinics of a few psychiatrists. Biochemical treatment (medicine and electric shock) and behavioural therapy were the only two therapeutic methods in use. The PCC has sought to educate about a broader range of mental health options, coping skills and treatments. Save the Children-UK in the OPT Save the Children UK began providing health services to Palestinian refugees living in Lebanese camps in 1949, following the exodus of Palestinians from the newly-created state of Israel. Following the signing of the Oslo Accords and

formation of the Palestinian Authority in 1994, we increased our support for partner organisations in the OPT, focusing on technical assistance in health and education. We established a full-time presence in the OPT in 2002. Currently, our programme consists of providing emergency support in Gaza, protecting children in their schools and communities, and promoting and protecting children’s rights. Welfare Association Welfare Association (WA) is a private, non-profit foundation established in Geneva in 1983 to support Palestinian society in sustainable development. It has become better known in Palestine and the Arab region by its Arabic name, Ta’awoun, meaning ‘cooperation’. WA beneficiaries are the more than four million Palestinians who are served by Palestinian non-governmental organizations, community institutions and charitable organizations in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, Galilee, Jaffa, Akka, Nazareth and Naqab, as well as in refugee camps in Lebanon. WA works by strengthening local organizations, and assisting them in improving their services to the community and in promoting Palestinian culture, heritage and identity.

Acknowledgments To all those who contributed to the success of this research, the children and families, and the project coordinating committee

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TABLE OF CONTENTS
1- Executive Summary .........................................................................................7 2- Introduction.........................................................................................................10 House Demolitions and Internal Displacement in the Occupied Palestinian Territory ...................10 House Demolitions: A Backgrounder...
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