On June 27, 2012 Sabeel organized an educational trip to Haifa for women from Jerusalem. Seventeen women left Jerusalem for an eye-opening trip to Haifa where we met a young tour guide who led us on an “alternative tour “to the old city of Haifa. We visited the mosque and heard the story of that specific mosque that was under a demolition threat for so many years.
The group saw how the Arab area was turned into government offices including the Supreme Court, and what was left of the building that the government ruined.
The group ended the tour at the “House of Grace” and heard the story from Mr. Jamal Shehadeh, the son of the founder of this home, who died young but left behind him a great family that kept the father’s vision of protecting the released prisoners and the homeless people and gave them shelter where they found a healthy environment and felt the love of the community.
On top of Mount Carmel at Stella Maris Guest House, the group had a nice break, excellent lunch and a wonderful social gathering in the shade, after a long morning’s walk, enjoying the sea view and the entire city of Haifa.
In the afternoon, the group continued their tour and visited “Bustan Khayat”; which is the garden that belongs to the Khayat family in Haifa. This family is struggling with Haifa Municipality in order to get permission to develop this wonderful area. So far they have failed to get a permit for this project. We also visited the Baha’i Gardens down the slope of Mt. Carmel.
The group went back with mixed feelings. So happy for the wonderful time they spent together and also sad for the reality on the ground.