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Peace Center for the Blind
Ms. Lydia Mansour, Director

An educational and vocational organisation for the underprivileged, blind, and visually impaired Palestinian women. The centre was founded by Ms. Lydia Mansour on 8 March 1983. Having lost her sight at the age of two, Ms Mansour was well aware of the multifaceted discrimination faced by blind and visually impaired Palestinian girls and women. Henceforth came the idea of founding the centre to tackle discrimination and marginalisation of blind and visually impaired Palestinian women, provide blind and visually impaired women with quality education, vocational training, social development, and health care.

Prior to the establishment of the centre, blind and visually-impaired Palestinian women had suffered from extreme neglect to the extent that most of them could not learn to read and write and lacked alternative spheres that would enable them to be productive members in the community, particularly in light of the overall difficult socio-economic situation in Palestine.

Equality, training and education

Blind and visually impaired women in Jerusalem and the West Bank are qualified and capable of integrating in the society as active and productive individuals.

The centre provides resident students with educational, vocational and health services in order to help them lead an interactive and sociable life and integrate in the society.

  1. Helping blind and visually impaired Palestinian women integrate into society.

  2. Providing blind and visually impaired women with vocational training and academic education.

  3. Improving women's life skills.

  4. Changing social stereotypes about blind and visually impaired women by proving that these women are capable of being productive partners.

  5. Ensuring health care and psychological support for blind and visually impaired women
Volunteer Opportunities:

The Peace Centre welcomes volunteers with experience in social and psychological work, preferably volunteers who have experience in working with blind and visually impaired people. The Centre also welcomes volunteers to sit with the resident students and entertain them.

Wish List:
  1. A centre.

  2. New books in Braille.

  3. The Garden.

What We Have to Offer:

All the aforementioned in the "programmes and projects" section.

Programmes and Projects
  1. Educational programme: It is based on Palestinian national curriculum standards including English, Arabic and Braille. Through the educational programme, resident students are able to earn the equivalent of a high school diploma and several have continued on to university studies.

  2. Vocational training programme: Hand and machine knitting, sewing and loom weaving, assembling brooms and wooden stools, and gardening.

  3. Home: A respectful and loving environment where the Peace Centre family can live together, share house responsibilities, and learn practical skills in mobility, self-care, personal hygiene and health.

  4. The Garden: A supplemental source of food for the boarding house as well as an opportunity for resident students to gain hands-on experience in gardening.

  5. Healthcare programme: Ensures the physical and emotional well being of the students, including doctor visits and hospitalisation, medication, and counselling when needed.

  6. Extra curricular activities:  Outdoor games, theatre and music, in addition to occasional trips to historical sites and parks.

  7. Transportation assistance: The acquisition of entry permits from the Israeli occupation for students and trainees from the West Bank who are unable to enter occupied Jerusalem freely along with a permit for at least one family member to visit and travel with them to and from the Centre.