For the last five years, the Palestinian Circus School has been training children and youth in the West Bank in juggling, trapeze, acrobatics, clowning, and other circus arts. We began as volunteers with 10 students and very limited resources. Today, we train over 160 students a week and the number keeps growing. Our dream to build a professional circus school in Palestine is taking shape.
The school has recently received the donation of a 150-year-old house in the beautiful town of Birzeit. After months of work cleaning and renovating the abandoned building, we moved out of the basement office and training space we were renting from another school and opened the doors to our own office and initial training space in November. Now we need your help to complete the first suitable training facility we have ever had--a metal structure that is 17 meters wide and 9 meters high, big enough for our students to practice the most difficult circus arts safely. When finished, our building will be a community center with space for artists of all kinds to train and perform, and will allow us to take our first steps towards creating an internationally recognized professional circus school.
Circus? In Palestine? Is that really what Palestine needs?
That was the most common question we faced in the beginning. By now, those familiar with the
work of PCS are convinced, saying, Yes! A circus in Palestine!
The effect of the Israeli military occupation has been very difficult for young Palestinians, particularly since 2000. They
witness their homes being unlawfully demolished, experience personal
humiliation at checkpoints, suffer physical abuse and arbitrary
detention and many carry the grief of having loved ones killed by the
Israeli military. Moreover, they face the harsh reality of mounting
responsibility in a tough economy with growing unemployment rates.
We are responding to
these challenges by teaching young Palestinians the circus pedagogy to
stimulate and develop their
physical, mental, artistic, emotional, social and cognitive abilities.
We are convinced that circus will offer youth in Palestine and around
the Middle East a brighter future.
What We Need & What You Get
The $25,000 we hope to raise here on Indie GoGo will kick off our fundraising for the addition to our building. If we surpass this goal, every dollar we raise will go toward the total cost of the building and circus equipment. If you join our campaign, we'd like to thank you with an assortment of prizes from t-shirts to a unique piece of Palestinian embroidery. Every donation helps us get closer to our goal.
Other Ways You Can Help
Help us spread the word about our campaign. Share this campaign by e-mail or Facebook, and, if you're in the area, come out and see our shows!