In commemoration of several important holidays throughout the month of March, the women’s group from Majd Al-Krum partnered with Kayan – Feminist Organization to host an evening of lectures on March 26 examining the social issues related to International Women’s Day, Mother’s Day, Palestinian Culture Day, and Land Day. The women’s group in Majd al-Krum was established formally last year after a long journey to become personally empowered and rally public support. Since its official establishment, the group has become a prominent local leader and an influential component of Kayan’s Forum of Arab Women Leaders.
The evening began with a welcome from Enas Sugaeir, a representative of the Majd al-Krum women’s group, who spoke about the social issues reflected by the March holidays, and about Mahmoud Darwish, whose birthday on the 13th of March is commemorated by Palestinian Culture Day. The coordinator of the women’s group, Wedad Diab, spoke next about the group’s continued cooperation with the community center in Majd al-Krum. The director of the community center gave a brief lecture underscoring the importance of the center’s support for the women’s group and stressing the need for women to participate actively in the local political scene.
Diab also described the long history of partnership between the women’s group and Kayan, which started two years ago with Kayan’s intensive empowerment and leadership training curriculum. Today, the group functions independently, with an established meeting place in the local community center and regular meetings with Kayan to plan community work. In recent months, Diab said the group has carried out activities to raise awareness about a range of topics including local environmental problems and the histories of Palestinian communities displaced through the founding of the state of Israel. Kayan’s Community Organizer, Adella Baadi-Shlon, described this partnership from Kayan’s perspective and noted that the women’s club will soon begin a project focused on raising awareness of health issues and rights in the community. Diab called on the women of Majd al-Krum to commit to long-term involvement in the group’s projects in order to continue this positive momentum.
The second half of the evening included a presentation by Reem Sweid-Haddad, a social worker who specializes in urban planning from the Arab Center for Alternative Planning. Sweid-Haddad summarized the history of the struggle against confiscation of land in the country and emphasized the impact of this unjust practice on Palestinian women who lost their productive role in society after their lands were taken. Local actor Mohammed Kanaan concluded the program on a humorous note with a stand-up sketch that satirized different social attitudes about gender roles.