The Holy Land Christian Ecumenical Foundation's (HCEF) 2012 Know Thy Heritage (KTH) Leadership Program Delegation has been confirmed, and will embark upon a two week visit to Palestine beginning July 6, 2012! 41 Palestinian Youth representing 5 countries are preparing for a journey of a lifetime through this unique and exciting Leadership Program.
The Delegation consists of ladies, gentlemen, Muslims and Christians, hailing 13 American states, and 4 other countries–Australia, Canada, France, and England–but their parents are from Haifa, Jericho, Hebron, Jerusalem, Jaffa, Birzeit, Gaza, Ramallah, and 20 other towns and villages in historic Palestine.
"Know Thy Heritage" is an annual leadership program for Palestinian youth in Diaspora, developed with the mission to empower Palestinian youth in the Diaspora by strengthening their knowledge of their Palestinian identity, culture, history, traditions, as well as their understanding of Palestinian economic environment, political landscape, social structures and conditions. "Explore & Live Palestine" provides them with the necessary tools and skills to enable them to be in continuous connection with their roots, heritage and homeland.
Sir Rateb Rabie, President and CEO of HCEF, explains "This mosaic of young faces represents the diversity of the Palestinian nation spread across the globe. Their shared dream of homecoming is an enduring testament of this same nation's cohesion and unity, across borders, oceans, religious and political divides, and across generations. With the KTH program, HCEF is making their dream come true — the dream to visit their home, to walk in the footsteps of their ancestors, to know their roots and their heritage." Together, these youth will undertake one journey to know their homeland and become Ambassadors of Palestine, Ambassadors of Peace.
Click here to view this inspiring video of the Inaugural 2011 KTH Journey!
HCEF launched KTH in summer 2011 as a pilot project including a Delegation of 33 young ladies and gentlemen from across the United States, of various religious, social, academic and professional backgrounds. The journey changed their lives. As one alumna said, "It was such a powerful experience… so moving. It's definitely making us want to go back!" In Palestine, this Delegation participated in activities with thousands of youth from over 60 institutions and organizations, many of whom were learning of one another and working together for the very first time. As a result of their experience, many KTH alumni initiated and reinvigorated projects back in the United States on behalf of Palestinians. HCEF and the KTH Advisory board were encouraged by this success to continue and expand the program.
To get to know these exceptional young leaders, and many more like them, join our Facebook group!
HCEF developed this program with the support of the Consolidated Contractors Company (CCC), Bank of Palestine (BOP), Paltel Group, and, leading partners of KTH in Palestine.
You can also see complete information about the "Know Thy Heritage" Leadership Program, on our webpage, where supporters can donate to the program, and youth can learn how to apply. KTH is now accepting application requests for our next journey in June-July 2013!