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NZ'ers sponsor camp for Palestinian children

From: "Caleb Starrenburg (NZ-Comm)" To: Subject: New Zealanders sponsor summer camp for Palestinian children Date sent: Fri, 29 Oct 2004 16:21:58 +1300

TEAR Fund New Zealand

For Immediate Release 29/10/04:

New Zealanders sponsor summer camp for Palestinian children

New Zealanders, through development organisation TEAR Fund, have sponsored a Children's Summer Camp for poor Palestinian children.

The camp offers marginalised Palestinian children the opportunity to enjoy a respite from their daily lives in a conflict zone. According to the UN Humans Rights Commission, 22% of Palestinian children under five suffer malnutrition, while 60% of Palestinian families live in acute poverty.

To address the needs of Palestinian youth, the three-week camp facilitated 65 children between the ages of three and 13. The camp took place from June 28 through to July 16.

The program offered the children opportunities of enrichment through age-group classes. Activities included music, art, drama, sports, games and field trips; one to a local swimming pool and two park outings, one to Bethlehem's Mary Doty Park and one to the Beit Al Liqa Center in Beit Jala.

Participants were encouraged to expand their academic skills through recreational reading and fun projects. Topics emphasised non-violence and reconciliation.

The Children's Summer Camp has been hailed by organisers as a great success, and a positive step towards reconciliation in the region.

ENDS

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