It’s August 3, 2014. The piercing sound of bombs hitting on his family’s house in Shujayea still echoes in Abdalhadi Alijla’s head, but he suddenly has an idea. “Do you want to help the Palestinians? Why not teach them how to fish rather than just feeding them?” he writes on his Facebook page.
Blunt and spontaneous, Abdalhadi’s proposal is simple: people willing to help the Palestinian cause can adopt a student in Gaza or the West Bank by financially supporting their university fees. “Imagine you have a tree in Palestine to take care of, a son, or a daughter that you can raise and give a better chance to. If you want to, I can help you find someone,” he wrote in English and Italian.
Less than an hour later, three messages arrived: each with a sponsorship proposal from Italy, USA and UAE. Two days later, the future sponsors have increased to five. The mechanism, he told BarakaBits, will consist in establishing focal points who will receive the bank transfer and send the invoice from the university back to the sponsor.
A doctoral student himself, Abdalhadi estimates that a university semester in Palestinian universities costs no more than 300 Euro, and he is already contacting four universities in Gaza and the West Bank to collect data on students in need of support.
Want to know how the initiative takes shape? We plan on following Abdalhadi’s steps in the coming weeks, so stay tuned for more information. The initiative is one step to ensure that Palestinian children, teens and young adults have opportunities for education despite their challenging circumstances. If you are interested in collaborating, contact Hadi through his Facebook Page or write at Abid.firstname.lastname@example.org.