Gaza and the Quakers – Decades of Solidarity

Mustapha MuhammedBlog, Gaza, Israel, JWE news, Palestine, Podcasts

This blog post is a heartfelt invitation to listen to the latest episode of PalCast, ‘Gaza and the Quakers – Decades of Solidarity‘, available on Apple & Spotify. This episode is particularly poignant as it is the first since the tragic loss of Yousef’s sister, Fatima, in Gaza. Yousef, one of our hosts, shared his reflections about her at the beginning of the episode.

The episode delved into the work of the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), which has been involved in establishing Palestinian refugee camps in Gaza since 1948. The AFSC’s commitment to education in Palestine dates back to the early 1900s with the establishment of the first Quaker School, the Friends School, in Ramallah.

Our guest for this episode was Jennifer Bing, the National Director of the Palestine Activism Program. She discussed the AFSC’s work in Gaza, both now and before October 7, which included bringing Palestinian writers and speakers to the US. This episode, hosted by Yousef Aljamal, Helena Cobban, and Tony Groves, promises to be an enlightening listen.

Jennifer Bing has been with the AFSC since 1989, organizing numerous speaking tours, conferences, educational workshops, protests, delegations, and public events. She has directed and produced two documentary films about Palestinians in the Chicago area, “Benaat Chicago: Growing up Arab and Female in Chicago” (1996) and “Collecting Stories from Exile: Chicago Palestinians Remember 1948” (1999). She also helped produce the recent documentary on Palestinian child detention, “Detaining Dreams” (2015). In 2022, she co-edited the anthology Light in Gaza: Writings Born of Fire (Haymarket Books).

Jennifer works with Defense for Children International Palestine on their joint advocacy campaign, “Israeli Military Detention: No Way to Treat a Child.” She also co-leads the educational project “Gaza Unlocked” with AFSC colleagues in Gaza and the movement building efforts in “Apartheid-free Communities” initiative for AFSC.

Jennifer began her advocacy for Palestinian children after working as a teacher in a Quaker school in Ramallah during the first Palestinian uprising (1986-1989). During those years, she also worked as a field worker and researcher for Save the Children, documenting the impact of the first popular uprising on Palestinian children under the age of 16.

Jennifer has appeared in numerous media outlets including Al Jazeera English, Truthout, Worldview/WBEZ, Mondoweiss, Electronic Intifada, Alternet, Chicago Tribune, Chicago Reader, Friends Journal, Wisconsin Muslim Journal, and The Washington Post. She is also a regular contributor to AFSC’s News and Commentary blogs.

We encourage you to listen to this episode and join us in learning more about the Palestinian cause and the role of organizations like the AFSC in advocating for justice and peace.