Who We Are & What We're Doing
Ibrahim and his colleagues wanted to create a nurturing reading space for children in Balata refugee camp in Nablus, so they opened a children’s library at the Yafa Cultural Center. From daily book checkouts to oral history projects with community elders, the library continues to grow, and Ibrahim is looking for more ways to expand its programs to continue to enrich the lives of Palestinian young people in the camp.
Molly and Josh are artists and movement archivists in Brooklyn, New York. They hope to connect with Palestinian artists and grassroots archival projects and learn about the preservation of cultural production in Palestine.
Elisabet is an Arabic literature public librarian in Stockholm, Sweden. She is interested in finding ways to support the growing distribution of Arabic children’s literature in Palestine.
How can archivists and library workers in Palestine and other parts of the world connect as individuals and within a larger context of ongoing colonization and imposed isolation? This summer, we will begin to find out. A group of 20 librarians and archivists from the US, Canada, UK, and Sweden will travel to Palestine to meet with our colleagues in library- and archive-related projects and institutions and apply our experience in the form of skillshares and other types of joint work.
We are public, school, and academic librarians; movement archivists; digitization experts; historians; Middle East specialists; activists; artists; writers; and more. We support access to information, and we recognize that this goes in more than one direction. On the delegation, we will explore how information about Palestine reaches us (or does not) and how Palestinians access (or cannot access) information. We will bear witness to the destruction and appropriation of information, and support efforts to preserve cultural heritage and archival materials of all kinds. We will visit research institutes and grassroots archival projects, children’s libraries in refugee camps, public and school libraries in towns, prisoner libraries, preservation and digitization initiatives, and museums.
Upon return to our communities, we will share what we have seen, apply what we have learned, publicize and build a network of further support for projects, and otherwise break down barriers to access in any way we can.
We thank you very much for your support, and look forward to sending you news about our work!
For more about us and the delegation, visit our website at librarians2palestine.wordpress.com.
What We Need & What You Get
We need your support to help make this delegation a success! Aside from participants’ airfare, which they are funding themselves, we need to raise a total of at least $20,000 to ensure that financial barriers do not prevent anyone from participating or any meetings, workshops, or panels in Palestine from happening. Half will come through delegate contributions and (hopefully!) small grants. We are trying to raise the other half through Indiegogo.
This is where you come in! If you can help us raise $10,000, you will not only ensure this delegation’s success, but you will get some great perks! A zine, posters, a signed book, handmade olive oil soap, a beautiful glass and ceramic piece from Hebron, and the satisfaction of having supported a great project are but a few of the fabulous gifts you can get as gestures of thanks for your generous support.
All donations are tax-deductible thanks to our fiscal sponsor, WESPAC Foundation, and every bit counts! Organizers are not being paid, so there is very little overhead. Rest assured that your money will go directly to Palestine and will be spent there.
This is the first delegation of its kind, and we and our partners in Palestine are so excited about the possibilities of what can come from it! Hannah, a school librarian, has led more than 25 delegations in Palestine, and Mezna has extensive experience with a wide variety of Palestinian archives. We will work with the rest of our planning team and our fabulous group of participants to craft a trip whose impact reaches far beyond this summer. We envision long-term projects based on mutual interests and needs, and we’re excited to keep you all informed about the work that results from this delegation.
Spread The Word!
Maybe you don’t have any money to donate right now, or maybe you’ve just donated $1,000. Either way, please help us spread the word about this campaign and this project! You can use the Indiegogo tools to share via Facebook and Twitter. Thank you!!!