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The Olive Press

Before the Taps Run Dry

by Anera

Jul 25, 2022

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Responding to Gaza’s Existential Water Crisis The semi-arid Middle East suffers from a chronic scarcity of water. The causes are many: climate change, drought, desertification, urbanization, over-consumption, waste and pollution. Politics also can present special challenges when it comes to accessing and distributing water resources. In Gaza, many of these issues are present in an…

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Fundraising is an Art

by Anera

May 25, 2022

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Hanin Azzam Talks about Crowdfunding in the Middle East This is the third entry in our series highlighting Arab youth change-makers. Read the first piece in the series, an interview with Sandy Boutros, and the second piece, with journalist Tahreer Mortaga on her community space and yoga studio in Gaza. Hanin Azzam is a regional…

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Roots in Palestine: Dedicated to Palestinian Refugees Since 1948

by Anera

May 15, 2022

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For Palestinians around the world, May 15th marks the “Nakba” (literally “disaster” or “catastrophe” in Arabic) which commemorates the 1948 Palestinian exodus during the establishment of the State of Israel. The resulting humanitarian crisis has affected geo-politics, individual states, the environment and human development in the Middle East and beyond for 71 years. It was…

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Women on the Frontlines of Healthcare in Lebanon

by Anera

Mar 24, 2022

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Women are pivotal in combating the pandemic as frontline responders, nurses, doctors, social workers, pharmacists and other health professionals in Lebanon.

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Women on the Frontlines of Healthcare in Lebanon

by Anera

Mar 24, 2022

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Lebanon’s economic crisis has only gotten worse, fueled by political hegemonies and corruption and mismanagement of resources, and further inflamed by the widespread protests against the regime, the Beirut port explosion, and finally the pandemic. The COVID-19 outbreak deepened the economic crisis, leaving the country indebted, facing inflation, and a dramatically devalued Lebanese lira. Women…

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The Only Yoga Club in Gaza

by Anera

Mar 17, 2022

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This piece by Tahreer Mortaga is the second entry in our series highlighting Arab youth change-makers. Read the first piece in the series, an interview with Sandy Boutros, here. I am a Palestinian journalist from Gaza. I’ve always loved to write. In 2004, I began working for local news radio stations. And I later obtained…

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Meet Mandy: A Palestinian Engineer in Gaza

by Anera

Mar 8, 2022

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In light of International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month, engineer Mandy Abu Kombouz talks to us about her life as a female engineer in Gaza. Standing before the school in a white hard hat and orange safety vest, Mandy Abu Kombouz is 27 years old, veiled, proud, and the only female Palestinian engineer on…

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An Interview with Sandy Boutros on International Women’s Day

by Anera

Mar 8, 2022

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This interview with Sandy Boutros, the founder and director of Koun, is the first in our new series highlighting Arab youth change-makers. Read the second piece in the series here. Why Koun? Tell us about yourself and your organization. Koun is an impact-led organization that strongly believes in the power of the mind, and one’s…

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COVID-19 in Palestine: A Lockdown Within a Lockdown

by Anera

Feb 14, 2022

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COVID-19 is a scourge that spares no society, rich or poor. Palestine is no exception. But Palestine’s precarious situation makes treating the virus and stemming its spread much more difficult. Inadequate healthcare, water and sanitation infrastructure, and resources limit Palestine’s ability to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The World Health Organization reports that in the…

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Falling Through the Social Safety Net in Lebanon

Nov 10, 2021

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Government social safety net programs provide healthcare, health insurance, retirement funds, disability payments, education, and other welfare services to people. The social safety net system has always been weak in Lebanon, but due to the economic and financial crisis it barely functions, and many forms of support are nonexistent. Even before gaining independence from France…

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