Jaime’s story (Australia):

When I met Ayman, I could see from the way he spoke about what it means to live in Hebron that he was a man of vision, honestly dedicated to the cause of his people. I had the privilege of working with him for three months, beginning to help kids from the ages of 6 to 9 with their English curriculum studies, helping adult students at the Aldea Centre to improve their conversational English and growing the reputation of the Hebron Hope Center. I also had the honour of experiencing his family’s kind hospitality, and spending time with them while helping with chores and relaxing. By the time I left, it was wonderful to see that small progress had been made and that plans were laid for it to continue to develop into a community center, which would begin to offer more focused services to benefit the local people of Tariq ben Ziad. I wish Ayman and his team all the best for the future. 

No experience in Palestine could be devoid of challenge, though; to be so close to the daily injustices faced by the people of Hebron and Tariq ben-Ziad in particular was trying, and the inevitable differences in culture required that I learn with respect and adjust accordingly. Naturally, in an environment like this, I was blessed to meet the bravest and most inspiring people, who were deeply invested in Hebron and learning what standing in solidarity truly means. I am grateful for everything I have learned from my experience with the Hebron Hope Center, and I am certain that any future volunteers will find equal value in theirs.  

Ben’s story (UK):

I visited Hebron in April 2018 with my friend. We arrived on the public bus and shortly after our arrival found ourselves talking with a Human Rights worker. She put us in touch with Ayman so we could learn more about this historical city. There is clearly significant hostility here. Fortunately, the work of Ayman and Hebron Hope Center shine through this sad situation. Ayman is an inspiration. He is clearly very well known around this city and loved by all the local Palestinian families. Children would shout his name and want to play with him as we walked through the streets, and mothers and fathers would wave from their houses. He has done a great deal of work already to help impoverished families, with an emphasis on education for children, and teaching new skills to women to provide employment opportunities. He is currently leading the building of a new school to facilitate these goals and his project is coming along nicely. It is fascinating how much he has achieved already at such a young age, and humbling to hear the sacrifices he has had to make to get here. I would highly recommend visiting Hebron to see his work first hand and I hope myself that one day I can go back to Hebron contribute to the ongoing projects.

Ben, UK