On the 10th of March, 2014,the PCC organized a lecture in Ras Al-Amud neighborhood in Jerusalem as part of “Increasing the Social and Political Participation of Palestinian Women” project. The lecture was attended by 15 women from the area, including 6 women that are members of a women’s empowerment group run by the PCC in the area. The lecture focused on parenting methods, ranging from over-protective parenting, patriarchal parenting, lenient parenting, neglectful parenting, and balanced parenting.
Lina*, 23 years old, was one of the women that attended the lecture. Lina is a housewife, has two children (3 and 4 years of age), and married five years ago, just after she completed her high school education. Lina explains, “women cannot participate in anything… the only reason I was able to attend this lecture was because it is conducted in the school and it focuses on parenting methods. My husband and his family do not allow me to participate in activities or clubs… they worry about me.” Lina,like many other women living in the area, is expected to be a housewife in every sense of the word - to take care of all household matters, and stay home with her children. She does not have the opportunity to go on outings, visits her parents only once per week, and is not permitted to take driving lessons or participate in any self-enhancing activities. “Stress leads to explosion,” says Lina. “I don’t feel productive and go through the same routine every day.” Lina deals with the stress and social pressures by taking out her frustration on her children. “I would like to change my behavior towards my children. I easily get provoked by them, and stress out from my husband’s family. I take out all my anger on my children. I don’t want to use violence with my children.”
Lina expressed an interest in joining the PCC’s activities in order to be active in a setting other than her home. Hiba Sandouka, a PCC social worker, expressed that the women in Ras Al-Amoud area face social restraints imposed by their families, and cannot easily participate in social and cultural activities. “I am organizing a recreational activity for women and their husbands, and none of the women have been able to convince their husbands to participate so far.”