Each summer since 2002, ICAHD has hosted an international camp in which activists from around the world join together with Palestinians and Israelis to rebuild Palestinian homes that have been demolished by the Israeli authorities. While ICAHD builds throughout East Jerusalem and the West Bank during the year, we hold our annual rebuilding camp in Anata, a Palestinian town near Jerusalem which has suffered greatly from demolitions over the years.
Part of Anata falls inside the municipal jurisdiction of Jerusalem, part falls in Area B of the West Bank and part falls in Area C, making it particularly susceptible to demolition.
Since 1967, Israel has demolished more than 24,000 Palestinian homes in the Occupied Territories and Gaza. Every year hundreds of Palestinians are forced from their homes, built on land they own. They watch helplessly as Israeli bulldozers and pneumatic drills destroy their homes in minutes. The Israeli government claims that these houses are illegal because they have been constructed without building permits; however, the Israeli authorities refuse to grant building permits to Palestinians.
The demolition of Palestinian homes by the Israeli government is illegal under international law. The Fourth Geneva Convention states:
_Any destruction by the Occupying Power of real or personal property belonging individually or collectively to private persons, or to the State, or to other public authorities, or to social or cooperative organizations, is prohibited, except where such destruction is rendered absolutely necessary by military operations_ (Article 53)
2010 SUMMER REBUILDING CAMP
This summer, ICAHD will once again rebuild a Palestinian home. We invite you to participate in this incredible opportunity to learn first-hand about life under Occupation and to do something “concrete” to end it.
Download Application form here (MS Word doc)
Working with the local community _ the Anata municipality, the families whose homes have been demolished and Palestinian construction workers _ camp participants, together with Palestinian and Israeli activists, rebuild an entire house in two weeks and pass the keys to the family. Living in the community, participants have the opportunity to get to know the Anata community.
Besides building, participants also travel the country. In organized field trips they observe the impact of settlement expansion on the chances for peace; visit Jerusalem, Bethlehem and Hebron and see how the construction of the Wall and the building of massive checkpoints impedes and controls Palestinian movement; tour the Negev Desert region inside Israel and learn how the Bedouin are fighting forced removal from their lands; explore Ramallah; visit one of the many refugee camps created in 1948; and meet people whose lives have undergone dramatic transformations as a result of the Occupation.
In the evenings participants are joined by Palestinian, Israeli and international activists, artists, scholars, intellectuals and leaders who are engaged in the struggle to resist the Occupation, where they have an opportunity to interact with them so they can advocate effectively for peace when they return to their countries.
DATES AND FEES
Participants will be based at ICAHD’s Beit Arabiya Peace Center in Anata, just outside Jerusalem. You should plan to arrive in Jerusalem no later than Sunday, July 18th because all the participants will convene at the ICAHD office on this afternoon and proceed to Anata. All participants will leave the summer camp on August 2nd. Often participants choose to stay in the region longer for further exploration.
The cost of the two-week rebuilding camp is US $1,500 per person (excluding air fare).
– $1000 will cover accommodations in Beit Arabiya Peace Center, including fabulous home-made Palestinian food prepared daily as well as basic sleeping, shower facilities and field travel.
– $500 will contribute to the costs of construction materials.
Since the fees do not cover all the costs of rebuilding, participants are asked to fundraise to help make up the difference (the total cost of rebuilding an entire home is US $35,000). To facilitate this effort, a comprehensive information packet about the issue of house demolitions and the work of ICAHD is available.
We hope to welcome people from all over the world to this yearas summer camp.
If you can’t make it, you and your networks can still be involved in the Summer Camp by fund-raising for the rebuilding costs and by providing scholarship assistance for one or more participants. During the camp, help publicize our daily reports on the internet.
Places are strictly limited and priority is given to those who have never had the ICAHD summer camp experience. There is no better way to express your solidarity than to join us in rebuilding a Palestinian home this summer.
Download Application form here (MS Word doc)