MedRiSSE in Palestine highlights positive experiences to boost social innovation and social and solidarity economy
On 26th of July 2023, The Agricultural Development Association (PARC) held a significant conference titled "Social Innovation and Social Solidarity Economy (SSE) in Palestine: Best Practices and the Way Forward."
The event, which counted on 58 participants, was organised as part of the activities under the MedRiSSE project and aimed to highlight the promotion and understanding of the Social and Solidarity Economy as an empowering and sustainable economic model for Palestinian communities. Due to SSE essence, PARC made a conscious effort to involve key stakeholders from relevant government ministries, civil society organizations and successful entrepreneurs who have benefited from previous projects implemented by PARC, including European projects as the MedUP! Project.
In the opening, Assem Khamis, undersecretary of the Ministry of Social Development of Palestine, emphasized their commitment to the promotion of the Social Solidarity Economy through policies, strategies and interventions. Then, Samah Makhlouf, representative of the Cooperative Work Authority, highlighted the significant role of cooperative companies in enhancing the Social and Solidarity Economy. These cooperatives contribute to poverty reduction, job creation and women empowerment while adhering to the legislative framework of ‘Law 20’ of 2017.
After the panel discussions, successful stories were shared with the audience. Among them, Dr. Maaeli Theyab, beneficiary of MedUP! project, explained her experience in innovative methods to integrate children with disabilities into society for a more inclusive, diverse and compassionate society, benefiting both the children with disabilities and the broader community as a whole. M. Salameh Zubeidat, beneficiary of PARC’s projects with social impact, reflected on how projects are benefiting women farmers and the economic conditions of women in the Jordan Valley, underlining the important role of the cooperatives to SSE resilience in the marginalized territories of Palestine that are under the threat of occupation.
During the event, MedRiSSE Mediterranean Social Innovation Lab was introduced to attendees. This online tool, developed by project partners’ PARC and Asamblea de Cooperación por la Paz (ACPP), is a free, virtual and collaborative platform that works as a central hub for information exchange and capacity building among SSE institutions, stakeholders, policy makers and individuals. It comprises several key sections as Community, Training courses, Bank ideas and Crowd and crowdfunding.
This MedRiSSE national conference proved to be a valuable gathering of stakeholders, exchanging ideas and experiences related to the Social and Solidarity Economy. It highlighted the importance of collective efforts and cooperation in achieving sustainable development and social justice in Palestine.