[PRESS RELEASE] Signature of an innovative Project to Support Youth and Socio-Economic Development in the Gaza Strip around Palestinian Cultural Heritage

Palestinian Prime Minister, H.E. Mohammad Shtayyeh, the Minister of Tourism and Antiquities (MoTA), H.E. Ms. Rula Ma’ayah signed today with the Agence Française de Development (AFD), H. E the French Consul General M. René Troccaz and Première Urgence Internationale an agreement to launch a 5-year project to Support Youth and Socio-Economic Development in the Monastery of Saint Hilarion in the Gaza Strip, as part of the INTIQAL 2030 program. The project will be implemented in cooperation and partnership between MoTA, Première Urgence Internationale, cultural institutions and the local community.

The baths complex at the Saint Hilarion Monastery – © Premiere Urgence Internationale

INTIQAL 2030 is a Youth-led initiative supported by Première Urgence Internationale, an innovative socio-economic development program that leverages on the protection of Cultural Heritage involving communities and local civil society stakeholders, encouraging their interaction on archaeological sites. This initiative creates and runs a safe space in which girls, boys, young people and families engage in concrete actions and express their fears and hopes in a protective environment while developing their resilience following violent or traumatic experiences.

Beyond its cultural and historical positive impact, renovating archaeological sites and engaging Palestinians in learning about their cultural heritage, the INTIQAL 2030 program champions other socio-economic development objectives. These include innovative activities aiming at achieving economic and energy independence of the site and its activities, and bringing new sustainable solutions which will benefit and empower Gazans and their community in the long term. Since the start of INTIQAL 2030 program, 94 new graduate, young women and men, 10 technicians and 300 volunteers have benefited from its various trainings in archaeology and conservation of cultural heritage.

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