“This program gave me a safe space to share things I’ve never talked about before.” – Gaza Girl, age 25
We recognize the harsh circumstances in Gaza make the situation especially challenging. That’s why we created an innovative program in 2019 to connect young women living in Gaza with the outside world, overcoming the limitations of travel and opportunity they face every day.
- A 10-week virtual program with Palestinian peers in the West Bank and 48-Arabs
- Safe spaces to build understanding, gain confidence, and inspire action
- A peer-to-peer support network
- Leadership, compassionate listening, authentic speaking, and emotional resiliency skills
- Facilitated by inspiring, expert Palestinian facilitators
- Global connections with teenage peers in New Mexico, USA participating in our Peace Ambassador program
It gives me so much power and hope to realize that despite our distance and differences, we can open up to each other and take a chance to be truly human. – Gaza Girl, age 22
Gaza is home to a population of approximately 2.1 million people, including almost 1.5 million Palestinian refugees. Israel and Egypt have maintained a blockade over Gaza since Hamas took control of the territory in 2007.
Learn more about life in Gaza directly from our 2022 program alumnae through their storytelling exchange with our peace ambassadors in New Mexico.
Applications for the 2023 Gaza Girls program are now closed.
If you have any questions, please email [email protected]
The program begins in May and includes 10 virtual weekly meetings with Palestinian peers and special cultural exchanges with young women in the United States.
Palestinian women, including Palestinians living in Gaza, the West Bank, and Arabs from 48, between the ages of 18-27, who are passionate about social change and peacemaking and who are interested in connecting with their peers to make a positive impact in their communities and the world.
This program is partially funded by Together Women Rise and Global Affairs Canada.
In 2004, Bessan Abuelaish, a 15-year-old from Gaza, came to our camp in New Mexico. Despite the many hardships she had faced during her young life, Bessan refused to give up hope for peace. Five years later, Bessan, along with her two sisters and a cousin, were tragically killed by Israeli tank shells fired at their home.
Bessan’s (1988-2009) memory lives on through her father Izzeldin Abuelaish, a medical doctor who worked in Israeli hospitals, and who published a book in remembrance of her called I Shall Not Hate: A Gaza Doctor’s Journey on the Road to Peace and Human Dignity. Tomorrow’s Women co-founder and filmmaker Debra Sugerman created the documentary film Broken as a tribute to her legacy as a peacemaker. The Gaza Girls program is dedicated to Bessan and all those affected by war and violence.
Image: Malak Mattar