Khan al Ahmar

October 27, 2017

The Bedouins are part of the Palestinian society and in many cases, they are the first to be affected by the Israeli settlements.  Most of them are nomad, therefore, they need large spaces to move and herd the cattle looking for food.

When I was visiting Bethlehem I met Ann who is involved in several projects in Palestine. One day she was about going to visit a Bedouin school and nursery school in a place between Bethlehem and Jerico and luckily I could join her. First, we met Agnesse and Aziza sisters, Ann’s friends, who drive us to the location.

It was a long trip with arid landscapes and hills covered by houses. Houses that seem to run away from the desert threatening some meters below.

The school is close to a motorway at Khan al Ahmar and it was built with recycled tyres some years ago.

External view of the wall of one of the classrooms. A couple of tyres can be seen on the wall as main construction material used for building the school.

Today the school has more than 150 students from different grades and more than 15 female teachers. It’s a sort of oasis of education in the middle of nowhere.

Bedouin children in one of the classrooms.

The school works. The commitment from the teachers and the effort that some students do to get into the school confirm this. 

The school almost covers all different degrees in the Palestine education system. This is a view of a classroom for a high degree group. In this school boys and girls are mixed but in the rest of villages I visited in Palestine they are separated.

Some of the students need to walk more than 1 hour to reach the school and it doesn’t seem to affect their energy levels after seeing them running like crazy during the break.

Unfortunately, the school is affected by a demolish order. The deadline is April 2018.

We also had a chance to visit a nursery school in the area. I tried to capture the joy and strength of the children despite the rough conditions.

Bedouin girl.
This boy was afraid of us and I didn’t manage to play with him. He looked for protection under the teachers’ hands.
Bedouin children in front of the main entrance of the nursery school. The children, in general, are inside of the rudimentary room to avoid the high temperatures outside.
View of the place where the nursery school is located. Some meters from the school there is a settlement that grows every year.