World Vision works with communities and children in Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza through a range of programmes that promote child development, change behaviors, improve the protective environment around children, and work to strength local systems to improve the well-being of children. We work with children ages 0 to 18 and cover three main areas: early childhood development (ECD), child protection & advocacy, and community resilience.
EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT
World Vision’s ECD programme focuses on the child’s well-being through the period from prenatal to age six, to enhance their well-being and early learning skills in secure and stimulating environments. ECD programmes are powerful equalisers for children who live in resource-poor settings, and they play an important role in breaking the intergenerational cycle of poverty. In partnership with the Ministry of Education (MoE) and Ministry of Health (MoH), World Vision implements a holistic ECD approach by integrating physical, mental, social and emotional support across each phase of a child’s development, especially for the most vulnerable.
Go Baby Go
World Vision’s Go Baby Go model is designed to target the most vulnerable pregnant mothers and their children in the first 1,000+ days of the baby’s life Developed with funding from the Gates Foundation, Go Bay Go aims to strengthen the knowledge of caregivers, their competencies, skills, confidence and well-being, and equip them with ECD stimulating tools so that they can provide age-appropriate nurturing care for children under the age of three, which is a crucial period of a child’s life considering the rapid brain growth and development. The ‘Go Baby Go’ model supports parents, who are first teachers of their children, with individual household-based support and group sessions for improved parenting skills, family well-being and holistic child development. The model also supports Mother and Child Health (MCH) services by equipping MCH clinics with the needed tools to improve the quality of provided services and enhance a child-friendly environment.
Today, World Vision JWG has trained 142 community health volunteers, who implement the model’s activities in 130 Palestinian villages and communities, aiming to achieve a significant positive change for Palestinian children. While only 62% of Palestinian children are on track developmentally in all domains, 94% of children of caregivers who participate in Go Baby Go are become developmentally on track (March 2021 semi-annual results). To learn more about Go Baby Go’s impact, click here.
World Vision’s aspiration for all children is for them to be “Educated for Life,” from birth all the way through and beyond adolescence. This life-cycle approach at the heart of World Vision’s education strategy enhances learning outcomes by integrating physical, mental, social and emotional support across each phase of a child’s development, especially for the most vulnerable.
Learning Roots targets children from ages 3-6, which are the earliest years of a child’s life and a window of opportunity to support the emergence of literacy, numeracy and life skills that will form the foundation for a life- time of learning and fulfillment. Learning Roots is designed to meet the development and learning needs of children from age 3-6, preparing them for a successful transition to primary school. All components of Learning Roots offer support for the most vulnerable children with special attention given to inclusion.
World Vision JWG has trained over 144 teachers on effective nurturing and best practices for child development, helped furnish and rehabilitate 168 kindergartens to create safe and stimulating environment and supported them by providing the necessary tools and resources, such as stationery and corner play toys. We also established 23 new public kindergartens (as of March 2021), with the support of the MoE, to increase access of children to education, particularly the most vulnerable. 89% of teachers who completed at least 80% of the sessions offered for teacher training scored at least 80% correct on all post-tests (March 2021 semi-annual results). To learn more about Learning Roots impact, click here.
CHILD PROTECTION AND ADVOCACY
In partnership with the MoE and the MoSD, we implement a holistic child protection and advocacy programme across all targeted areas in the West Bank. The programme uses a ‘systems approach’ to strengthen the protective environment around children as well as strengthen the capacities of children themselves. Interventions focus on improving governmental policies and accountability, improving social services, catalysing behaviour and attitude change, and strengthening child resilience. Current Child Protection and Advocacy programming in the West Bank includes:
Building the skills and changing attitudes of for caregivers, including faith and church leaders, for positive parenting. While our baseline shows that 82% of parents believe punishment is necessary to bring up a child and while 92.5% of parents report using physical punishment or psychological aggression in the past 12 months, 61% of parents demonstrate increased knowledge of positive discipline and other rights of children after participating in World Vision workshops.
Actively engaging children and adolescents to develop their life skills and involve them in initiatives that 'end violence’ and promote social accountability on child protection issues.
Empowering different community members, including children and adolescents, to advocate for improved referral and response mechanisms in the West Bank to respond to issues of child abuse, as well as national level policies and regulations to tackle violence and strengthen the overall child protection system for all boys and girls.
Support MoSD to improve the child protection system with the focus on child protection networks.
Working with other national partners to end violence in and around schools through a global, “It Takes a World” campaign focused on ending violence in and around schools.
Palestinian communities live under high fragility and vulnerability so strengthening their resilience, their ability to ‘bounceback’ after various shocks, is critical. World Vision works through a number of approaches including Education in Emergencies (EiE), helping communities with disaster preparedness to reduce the risks of all types of disasters, addressing gaps in water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) programming, and building the skills of adolescents to be change agents in their communities (Youth Resilience) and offer service-learning projects.
Education in Emergencies and WASH
We partner with the MoE and village councils to ensure children living in vulnerable areas, particularly Area C, continue to access their right to quality education even in times of conflict and crisis. Activities within the programme are designed to provide children with physical, psychosocial and cognitive protection that can be life sustaining and lifesaving.
World Vision JWG, has trained over 100 school counselors to address the needs of children who are potentially exposed to violence through psychosocial support, drama and arts programmes. World Vision JWG has rehabilitated schools taking into consideration safety measures by building fences to protect children from conflict and other hazards and installing safety shields over schools. We have also supported communities in the building of safe play areas and playgrounds as well as enhanced WASH facilities in schools, including latrines, drinking water, and other critical hygiene education. For example, World Vision, in partnership with War Child, is implementing a programme called, ‘SAFE’, which targets 50 schools through ECHO funding in order to increase safe access to schools and psycho-social support for children in the West Bank. To learn more about the SAFE project, click here.
We continue to promote students’ well-being through integrating extracurricular activities within the schools’ daily schedule: over 60 teachers and 12 supervisors were provided with the needed training to support schools in mitigating risks and in collaboration with the civil defense, 120 schools were provided with simulation training on fire and earthquake hazards.
With funding from BMZ through for the ‘Promoting Environmental-Friendly Practices and Green Schools in Palestine’, we installed 173 solar panels on schools in Area C to enable access to continuous electricity. Many schools lack access to energy networks. To date, we installed 22 solar energy systems on the roof of 22 governmental schools with a total capacity of 173 KW. The solar systems provide energy-saving techniques to reduce CO2 emissions by installing 173 kW solar energy systems that generates clean energy of around 294,100 kWh per year and reduces 205,870 kg of CO2 per year. In addition, 37 schools have also adopted ‘green initiatives’ to improve schools grounds, enhance care for the environment, and to educate in critical sciences. To learn more about the project and its impact, click here.
World Vision works to help communities prepare to mitigate the effects of disasters as well as responds to emergencies, such as COVID-19. Our programmes include helping both schools and communities to develop safety and contingency plans as well as other training such as first aid. The support is critical, especially as emergency services cannot access all communities and some communities require an hour to reach them. In FY20 alone, we supported 601 institutions with support for COVID-19. Institutions include churches, mosques, quarantine centers, hospitals, clinics, village councils and community centres. Support includes psyscho-social support as well as disinfectant, masks, and prevention knowledge.
Innovation, Motivation, Participation, Action, Community Teams (IMPACT+ Clubs)
World Vision JWG aims to build the resilience of youth and transition adolescents (aged 12-18), especially the most vulnerable, into adulthood as active citizens empowered with competencies, values, confidence and social connectedness through an evidence-based practice, IMPACT+. The model is a club-based and is focused on leadership, active citizenship, employability, and social entrepreneurship.
IMPACT+ is a relatively new model for World Vision, but has been found to bring statistically significant results in as short as 12 months in other countries in the Middle East and Eastern European region. For example, in Armenia, 80.5% of adolescents had a pessimistic character, but after implementing the IMPACT approach, 74.4% of these struggling adolescents shifted to having an optimistic character.
In FY20, 23 active clubs in the West Bank reached almost 30,000 people through 89 service learning projects. The projects, which included important activities to provide prevention of COVID-19 and other support to vulnerable children, demonstrate the valuable role of youth in enhancing their community’s resilience. To learn more about the power of IMPACT+ Clubs, listen to these adolescent girls in this video.