MedTOWN in Palestine empowers women: Beitlo's Sustainable Experience


In the heart of Beitlo, a Palestinian charming village grappling with rising unemployment among its women and youth, a remarkable transformation is taking place. A visionary sub-grant project is breathing new life into this community, driven by the dual mission of empowering its residents economically and nurturing a deep sense of environmental consciousness. As traditional practices give way to innovation, the village is set to embrace a brighter and more sustainable future.

The subgrant was awarded by the MedTOWN project partner in Palestine, Palestinian Agricultural Relief Committee (PARC), and cofunded by the ENI CBC Med ProgrammeAsamblea de Cooperación por la Paz (ACPP) and the Beitlo Ladies Charity Association.

Turning Trash into Treasure: Beitlo's Sustainable Renaissance

Unemployment has hit the women and youth of Beitlo particularly hard. Recent graduates find themselves without opportunities, and many women struggle to secure a stable income. Meanwhile, waste continues to accumulate in traditional ways, posing environmental threats. But in the midst of these challenges, a group of community activists and local non-profits has taken charge.

The "Beitlo Ladies Charity Association" has made it their mission to bring about a positive change. Established on February 23, 2011, and licensed by the Ministry of Interior and accredited by the Ministry of Women, this association is determined to empower the village's women and youth. Their vision is clear: "An educated woman, an empowered family, and a healthy society."

A Vision of Empowerment and Sustainability

The sub-grant, with a total budget of about 15,000 euros, contributed by the project (12,975 euros) and the Beitlo Ladies Charity Association (2,025 euros), promises to bring life-changing opportunities to Beitlo. Over five months, the project will strive to create economic opportunities and provide employment for women and youth in the village.

The primary justification for this investment is the dire need for support in this community. The Beitlo Women's Association, consisting of 25 dedicated women, supports families ranging from poor to average financial conditions. Most of these women are homemakers with no independent income source. This project aims to change that by empowering them and introducing them to new economic opportunities.

A Step Towards Environmental Preservation

In addition to empowering women and youth economically, this project champions environmental preservation. Recycling is at the core of their strategy. The project addresses the issue of waste accumulation, especially old clothes, which often end up being burned or randomly discarded, marring the village's natural beauty.

With a population of about 5,000 people, the project intends to set up a clothing recycling unit. Old clothes, including traditional Palestinian dresses, will be collected and transformed into new, high-quality products. These products will include educational aids, children's toys, kitchen accessories, bags, wallets, sheets, and more.

Modern technology, like laser printing, will be harnessed to increase the value and aesthetic appeal of these upcycled items. Even the fabric scraps will be put to good use, finding new life as stuffing for toys or pillows, benefiting various local artisans.

About social progress and future...

Beitlo's sustainable revolution is a beacon of hope in a time of economic challenges and environmental concerns. As the project progresses, it will undoubtedly transform lives, empower women, and forge a stronger connection between the village's youth and the community. This innovative approach to waste recycling not only creates economic opportunities but also ensures a cleaner and greener environment for Beitlo.

The Beitlo Ladies Charity Association, in partnership with the Bitlo Women's Cooperative, exemplifies the power of community-driven initiatives. As they continue to work towards their goals, they remind us that positive change is possible, even in the face of adversity. With innovation and determination, Beitlo is on its way to a brighter and more sustainable future. 

More info on the MedTOWN in Palestine pilot projects, here

More info on the Mediterranean Social Innovation Lab, here