Online Campaigns - Our online campaigns on our Hebrew Facebook page officially launched with a video of our Board Member Mutasim Ali's greeting for Passover, followed by a video of Yuval and Tesfu showing how it’s common to say hello in Eritrea. Our engagement on the page more than tripled, and we are looking to expand it in the coming weeks. Our goal is to keep showing the community to Israel in a positive light, focusing on the human.
Following the campaigns, we can see more engagement in our non-funded organic post.
Community Leadership - We are very excited about our special community leadership program focusing on women in leadership this year! 9 Sudanese Darfuri women graduated from our women's leadership course after 3 months of weekly meetings. They learned about leadership, business development and now have new tools and skills to support themselves, their families and their communities. They plan to combine their new-found knowledge with their prior experience and passion for traditional art to begin their own initiative.
This year, ARDC has expanded its advocacy efforts to specifically target Israeli audiences. We believe youth and young people are the future change-makers of our society. Over the past month, we were happy to meet a group of 16 high school girls who took part in a youth leadership program. We had an interactive workshop in Levinsky Park and took a tour of Neve Shannan, walking them through the history of asylum seekers in Israel.
Tours - Our advocacy team met with 40 pre -military (michina kdam tzvait) young Israelis for a tour and information session about asylum seekers in Tel Aviv, where they had a chance to learn about life in south Tel Aviv, hear from an asylum seekers personal experience, and visit our agriculture rooftop and a community garden.
Additionally, we met a group of young people from the Shalom Hartman Institute for a presentation on asylum seekers and a walking tour of Neve Shannan. The tour was organized jointly by one of our higher education students and his tutor, a student at the Shalom Harmen Institute. The tour was filled with lively debate and discussion.
Events - We held an event titled ‘Understanding Asylum Seekers’ at the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation for 40 attendees, students from IDC, and asylum seekers. They watched a film and participated in a workshop. The event was a great success as ARDC received wonderful feedback and requests for similar events.
ARDC was also invited to speak to a group of students from Bar Ilan University. While the event was met with controversy, there was a good turnout and students were engaged. The students learned about the challenges facing asylum seekers. It was a fruitful event and we hope to have more such activities with Bar Ilan students in the future.
We held a Passover Seder event with ARDC’s PREP students and Israelis, including three of our board members (Mula, Konneh & Ian). It was a unique experience presenting the similarities of the history of the Jewish people and the asylum seeker community.
This month we celebrated World Refugee Day at ARDC's annual event. We featured the film “Warehoused,” an independent documentary chronicling life in Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya. Dadaab is one of the world’s largest refugee camps with 343,884 official residents, though estimates of actual population size are much higher. The film follows the efforts of one man to reunite with his family in the United States. The film was featured worldwide by a multitude of organizations working to solve refugee crises.
We presented our work with a poster presentation and danced to the music of Chura band- an amazing local Eritrean band that advocates against oppression of refugees.