The “Jerusalemite Women Forum” (JWF) carried out a series of activities, including holding 15 meetings of the “Women Reading Club”, through which participants read and analyze selected texts, take part in critical review and discussion on political and social books and novels. Additionally, several workshops and exchange visits took place between women groups to exchange experiences, expand and strengthen the Forum and promote networking between its members and other female leaders in Jerusalem, towards drafting a code of conduct for the Forum for the next two years. Furthermore, 18 members of the Forum participated in an intensive training on lobbying, advocacy, campaigning and leadership skills. As an output of the training, the participants discussed and drafted a proposal and work plan for a campaign to raise awareness on the issue of early marriage in Jerusalem. As for the annual “Women Training Academy”, it was held over 5 days under the title “Jerusalemite Women for Change”, with the participation of more than 50 Jerusalemite women activists and community leaders. The academy included several awareness-raising workshops and sessions on social and legal issues related to women’s rights, the effective and important role of women leaders in society, and the problem of early marriage in Jerusalem and how to combat it. The academy’s activities also included organizing an exchange visit to Tal Rumeidah in Hebron, where members of the JWF met with female activists from the women’s group Karamati. During the visit, the participants exchanged experiences and stories about the challenges they face as women in Jerusalem and Hebron, their roles as activists and community leaders, and the mechanisms they use to support each other and their communities.
The Forum was established by hbs partner organization Madaa Creative Center (MCC) in 2020 and currently has more than 60 female members, who are community leaders and social and political activists from several towns in Jerusalem (Silwan, Ras al-Amud, al-Isawiya, al-Tur and Jabal al-Mukabber). The JWF aims to provide a safe space for female community leaders and activists to express their views, opinions and aspirations, to exchange experiences, to discuss issues that are most relevant to them and impact their daily lives as Palestinians and as Jerusalemite female activists. It also aims to enhance partnership and networking among women’s groups in Jerusalem, raise their awareness and provide them with the necessary skills to achieve social justice.
The Forum is held within the framework of the project “Towards Enhancing the Voice of Palestinians in Jerusalem”, which aims to empower female community leaders and activists on political, social, legal and cultural levels, in addition to providing a safe space for them to help overcome the daily challenges they face and to enhance their self-confidence.