Palestine Works is a new, US-based nonprofit that engages and harnesses the expertise of young professionals to make sustainable contributions to Palestinian communities.
what we do
Our first project, Palestine Works Law Fellowships, connects law students to internships with human rights organizations and universities serving Palestinians in the Occupied Territory and Palestinian citizens of Israel, starting in Summer 2013.
We partner with law schools to recruit students interested in working with Palestinian communities, and to ensure the best qualified students are selected as Fellows. The law schools provide the primary funding through their public-interest grant programs. The organizations add whatever funding or in-kind contributions they can. We help Fellows get to their internships, get situated, and get to work. We also organize programs for Fellows during their internships to help them make the most of the experience.
Fellows are expected to continue their service after their internships through scholarship that builds on their summer work, by holding events on their campuses, and through other creative endeavors. We collaborate with Fellows on these legacy projects, connecting them with academics to guide their work, and helping them publish their work in law reviews, academic journals, and new media. Through their internships and legacy projects, Fellows return to their schools and move on to their careers as stakeholders in a better future for the Palestinian communities they serve.
what we don’t do
Decide what the future of Palestine looks like. We are often asked questions like whether Palestine Works supports a one-state or two-state solution and whether it supports the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. We like the way that the Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem answers these questions:
B’Tselem’s primary goal is to promote Israel’s adherence to human rights and international humanitarian law as it applies to Israel’s conduct in the Occupied Territories. We support all policies that would substantially decrease or end the violations of human rights under the Occupation. We do not weigh in on political matters, except to comment on their implications for human rights.
Likewise, the primary goal of Palestine Works is to make lasting contributions to Palestinian communities. The only political commitment we require, of our Fellows and our partner organizations alike, is an absolute commitment to nonviolence. While we support a solution to the conflict that honors the equality of Israelis and Palestinians, we want our Fellows to decide for themselves how best to honor that principle. Thus, Palestine Works does not weigh in on political matters unless they interfere with our ability to fulfill our mission.