This week we have a blog post written by long term Hands Up Project volunteer, Ashraf Kuhail. Ashraf is a very committed member of our HUP community, a brilliant teacher (and newly appointed supervisor) and one of my best friends in Gaza.
COVID- 19 is considered to be one of the worst crises humanity has witnessed in the modern age. The worst thing is that it attacks families and societies and destroys relationships. It’s thrown up the selfishness hidden inside mankind and unveiled so many horrible fallacies of fake kindness and the facade of prestige.
But crises also bring the best of humanity to the surface. They reveal that there’s so much love and goodness inside people – enough to wipe out all the hatred and aggression made by politics and politicians. Crises prove that there are so many people around the world who can convert feelings of fear and horror into happiness and smiles.
In the early days of this pandemic, and at a point where everyone just felt like collapsing, so many kind hearted people insisted on polishing the heartbreak and sadness and changing them into unity, love and smiles.
Increasing numbers of Hands Up Project volunteers from all over the world devote so much of their time and effort to helping thousands of disadvantaged Palestinian children in defeating internal fears which they’ve lived with for so many years.
Specifically, inside the Gaza strip, hundreds of thousands of children are suffering from the ongoing blockade and in practice have lived under quarantine for more than a decade. These kids need real opportunities to express themselves and to tell their full stories. They need to learn, to play and to smile as other kids around the world do.
What the hands up project offers to them is really heroic and holistic. A few weeks ago 18 beautiful plays out of over 160 have been declared as winners in The hands up project 2020 playwriting competition. These plays carry very strong heart-touching messages showing that in the time of pain, fear and crises, there’s always lots of hidden beauty which need to be polished and brought to the surface. It is the duty of all good people who love freedom to highlight this when needed.
Palestinians and Gazans really owe all you volunteers of HUP, loads of love and appreciation for everything that you do, and on behalf of all Palestinians we wish you all, safe times and life. This pandemic, sooner or later, will end, but the seeds of beauty you’re planting will one day bear fruit and will last for ever.