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Monthly Archives: February 2013

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The Future is Women

“Now more than ever the world needs to unleash women’s entrepreneurship to make our economies and societies stronger,” Michelle Bachelet, United Nations Women’s Executive Director. A study by Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) concluded that for the first time in 13 years women are creating businesses at a greater rate than men in three economies and the rates are almost equal in four others. In my Women’s Incubation Service for Entrepreneurs (WISE) IT class, I work with women with an array of businesses – from a wedding dress shop to a sheep farm. The women are enthusiastic and desperate to learn so in turn Continue reading…

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Leading the way for early childhood development

Shireen Issa, 26, from Salem, a village outside of Nablus, is a teacher in TYO’s Core Child Program. Shireen began as a volunteer in 2010 and this is her first session as a teacher. What has been your favorite memory at TYO? The best thing at TYO is the kids themselves and the relationships I’ve had with them. I love the atmosphere in the classroom and watching my students learn. When I was a volunteer, I shared a favorite memory of one child, Ali. What brought you to TYO and why are you a teacher here? In 2010, I came to TYO, Continue reading…

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Making English Work at An-Najah

The New York Times ran a big story this week about how a college degree is becoming a prerequisite for even the lowest-level jobs. Reading about the plight of recent college graduates in the United States and their struggle to find rewarding, challenging employment, it was hard not to think immediately of my class of beginner English students at An-Najah University. Whatever issues young people are facing in the US economy, they are dwarfed by the obstacles encountered by young Palestinians entering the workforce. According to a report from the International Labor Organization, more than 70% of Palestinians under the Continue reading…

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Meet Tomorrow’s Youth: Najla’

Najla’ Fathi Slaman, 25, from Zeita, is a current volunteer in the Core Child Program at TYO. This is Najla’s first session at TYO. What has been your favorite memory at TYO?  TYO has been the first place that has given me the chance to work and to be around children and give them lots of love. In my first couple of weeks, I started volunteering in the sport class until the third week when I moved to the IT class. The day I switched, I didn’t imagine the amount of love I had been surrounded by. Some children started crying because they wanted Continue reading…

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They’re Anything but Boring!

If you decide to venture all the way up to the 5th floor on any given morning at TYO, The Women’s Group is in session you’ll hear just one thing above the musical selections of Shakira, J-Lo, and Nicki Minaj. You’ll hear the sound of at least 25 women laughing and chattering between crunches, jumping jacks, a little Zumba, and of course catching their breath. The Women’s Group here at TYO was established to provide mothers of the Core Program’s children, as well as other local women, with a safe place to come explore topics that they otherwise wouldn’t have Continue reading…

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Getting WISE in English

For many of the women enrolled in TYO’s Women’s Incubation Services for Entrepreneurs (WISE) program, the opportunities offered at the center are the difference between progress and stagnation; between success and failure. Without TYO, some of the women would not have been able to draw up business plans, receive trainings, find funding, and launch their businesses. For my WISE beginner English class, I have the chance to work with two sisters, Afnaan and Reena, who have already seen the benefits of the WISE program as well as TYO’s earlier program, Fostering Women’s Entrepreneurs in Nablus (FWEN). Afnaan and Reena started Continue reading…

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TYO is Invited to the Arab Youth & Entrepreneurship: Holistic Approaches to Nurturing Local Ecosystem Conference in Doha, Qatar

The conference held Feb. 16th-18th,  was organized by the Arab Urban Development Institute and Silatech, in partnership with the World Bank and the Global Partnership for Youth Employment. The TYO team was invited by Silatech, to attend the 3-day conference in Doha, where key stakeholders from government, private and public sectors came together to address ways to improve opportunities for youth entrepreneurs in the MENA region. “The premise of this conference is that a more comprehensive approach to youth economic inclusion is needed, supported by the creation of local urban ecosystems that enhance youth entrepreneurship and economic activity at the Continue reading…

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Local Students Embarking on Their Global Journey

Take a minute and put yourself in the shoes of a typical university student anywhere in the United States. You’ve just arrived for your 8:00am Intro to Philosophy class on an icy February morning (I know this is painful just thinking about it, but stick with me). You sit down, take off your gloves, and immediately start nursing your coffee thermos when you remember what today is. It’s the first day since the university-wide curriculum change went into effect and from this point forward your courses will all be taught entirely in Arabic. Uh-oh! And you thought only hitting the Continue reading…

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Meet Tomorrow’s Youth: Hassan

Hassan Abu Leil, 26, from Balata refugee camp, is a current volunteer in the Core Child Program at TYO. This is Rawan’s first session at TYO. What has been your favorite memory at TYO?  I’m a new volunteer and I’ve only been working with the children for three weeks. So for me, everything is still new as I learn about the children, their issues and their lives. But in general, I am enjoying the joy they bring to the building. I like when they jump up and down with excitement and when they line up for classes. I’m also glad to see them have Continue reading…

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Messi or Ronaldo!?

The first thing I noticed when I arrived in Nablus, was that you either support Real Madrid or Barcelona. The affiliation with one of these two clubs is tremendous, with Real Madrid and Barcelona flags painted around the city along with ‘Messi’ and ‘Ronaldo’ graffiti all over town. This world-wide debate as to who is better has spread to this small Middle Eastern city. The recommencement of the European Champions League coincided with TYO’s soccer classes for the local boys and girls and personally, this is what I was most excited for! While Van Persie is facing off against Ronaldo Continue reading…