Over the last months, Musicians without Borders entered into an exciting new friendship with GVC in Palestine. Introduced to GVC by Mohamad, one of our music workshop leaders, our local team created a new Musical Playground program around WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene). How do you teach teenagers how to wash their hands properly? By using music! Although we were doubting whether the older boys would take us seriously, they were rapping when to clean their hands as if it was the best text ever. After a series of body percussion activities, it was easy to get into the flow: When do you wash? Before you eat! When do you wash? After the toilet! When do you wash? After you take care of your little sibling! (translated from Arabic)
The first workshop series and performance with GVC took place in February and March in al-Jaba’, an isolated village close to Hebron. The village is under closure, which means only specific cars can enter the area, making our work even more complicated. But that didn’t stop us from bringing a wonderful team, including volunteers Heath and Maureen, who accompanied our songs on mandolin and guitar, and Dutch rappers Manu and Guus (Kern Koppen).
We sang about responsibility and cooperation, we rapped about washing your hands, we listened to a funny story told by Yasmeen (representing ‘the boy’) and Mohamad (representing ‘the germ’) about their views on a dirty versus a clean house. We danced the ‘cleaning dance’ and played rhythms with spoons to accompany the raps of Mohamad, Nadim, Manu and Guus. After the performance, a healthy home cooked meal was served to the boys from al-Jaba’.
Enjoy the pictures!
Fabienne van Eck is the project manager and music coach of Palestine Community Music, delivering music workshops in refugee camps, isolated villages and hospitals. Since 2012, Fabienne has been the artistic director of Sounds of Palestine, a program for children from refugee camps that combines music and social work.