In February 2007, MECI launched its pilot program in Beit Rima, a village in the West Bank. MECI’s multifaceted integrated child centered community development model was designed based on a grassroots approach and using women and children as agents of change in their communities.
MECI’s program includes three pillars: Children’s Education and Health, Women’s Empowerment and Community and Economic Development. The program has been designed to ensure that children stay in school and have safe places to play and explore to fully develop, with added skills and increased self esteem; women are empowered through the development of social enterprises that provide self-generating income and jobs for the community. Together they are able to create a strong civil society, essential for sustainable growth and peaceful solutions in the region.
MECI's program serves over 1,400 girls and boys ages 6-17 in two elementary and two secondary schools in Beit Rima.
MECI is registered as INGO in Palestine, with an operational team on the ground to implement and oversee the quality of the program directly in Beit Rima. The team is also building expansion plans to outreach to new communities where the needs are greatest. In 2018, MECI signed a new 5-year MOU with the Ministry of Education which enables MECI’s programs to take place in the public schools after school hours.
Children’s Education and Health Programs
MECI’s newly enhanced after school program includes one on one and group psychosocial counselling as well as after school activities that provide healing and happiness, teaching leadership and life skills as well as positive coping mechanisms to deal with trauma and daily hardships. MECI's programs bring joy and possibility into the lives of these children, offering them a brighter vision of the future.
The program activities include providing basic health care, including dental and eye-care check-ups, nutritional snacks, music, art, sports, environmental science, yoga, chess, cooking, and academic enrichment in Arabic, Science and Math. The program also focuses on community service to instil a spirit of giving back in students. The children work together as volunteers to support community projects such as litter collection, planting gardens and visiting the sick and elderly. The after school program runs in tandem with the national school schedule. MECI also provides a fun activities based Summer Camp.
MECI offices are located within the Dheir Ghassaneh Women’s Association to enable MECI to provide ongoing capacity building and planning support for female led social enterprises that provide community wide economic development and job creation. The Women’s Association also provides the nutritional snack program for MECI’s after school activities.
MECI Scholar Program
MECI’s University Scholarship Program is in its 3rd year, with 17 female scholars attending three different Universities in the West Bank, MECI intends extend the scholarships in the coming years to to include both boys and girls.