2007 was an exciting and productive year for the Rachel Corrie Foundation. We’d like to share our accomplishments with you and invite you to be a part of our work.
In the US and Internationally the Rachel Corrie Foundation…
• Supported Palestinian speaking tours in the US, and raised funds to support projects in the West Bank and Gaza, including at the Rachel Corrie Children and Youth Cultural Center in Rafah.
• Facilitated and supported connections between US and Gazan members of the Olympia-Rafah Sister City Project.
• Coordinated with the Al Mezan Center for Human Rights and Gaza Community Mental Health Programme to educate American citizens and members of Congress about conditions in Gaza and human rights violations that occur there.
• Networked with the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation in support of June events in Washington DC that marked the 40th anniversary of the Israeli occupation. Craig and Cindy Corrie spoke and marched in DC on this historic occasion, and joined other citizens and visitors from Gaza in meetings with members of Congress.
In Olympia and Washington State, the Rachel Corrie Foundation…
• Awarded the third annual Rachel Corrie Memorial scholarship at The Evergreen State College and continues to provide support to students working to bring Iraqi refugees to study in 2008.
• Hosted visitors from Palestine and Israel:
- Mohammed el-Khatib and Feryal Abu Haikal from Bi’lin and Hebron
- Dr. Mona el-Farra from Gaza
- Mohammed Abu Asaker from Rafah, studying at American University
- Simone Bitton, Israeli filmmaker (Wall)
• Partnered with Olympia organizations to mark the 40th anniversary of the Israeli occupation with street theater checkpoints, a statement at the Olympia City Council meeting, and a teach-in about the 1967 war with remembrances from Palestinians.
• Sponsored and co-sponsored a host of events to educate and to inspire grassroots activism:
- A visit by mural artist Susan Greene of Break the Silence Mural Project with presentations about murals in the West Bank, Gaza, and the Bay Area.
- Community gatherings to educate and build momentum for an Olympia-Rafah mural to be painted in spring 2008.
- Hidden Histories: Honoring Local Native American and Palestinian Struggles – an event to mark the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, featuring the film Jerusalem 1948 and indigenous-American speakers addressing the commonalities in the struggles of Palestinians and indigenous Americans.
- An evening with life-long activist and actor Mike Farrell.
- Beyond Occupation – an educational event with Palestinian-American spoken word artist Suheir Hammad and journalist Dahr Jamail, in conjunction with the Olympia Film Festival.
- The 65th anniversary celebration of the American Friends Service Committee/Seattle at which the Rachel Corrie Foundation was a recipient of AFSC/Seattle’s Pillar of Peace award.
- Peace Works – our annual educational conference or series, which in 2007 supported local performances of the Seattle Repertory Theatre’s production of My Name is Rachel Corrie, including educational outreach to three area high schools and post-play discussions at The Evergreen State College. Peace Works this year also brought words of other courageous Americans to the fore with Voices of a People’s History of the United States, at the Washington Center for the Performing Arts, introduced by author and historian Anthony Arnove and read by actor Brian Jones, Lt. Ehren Watada, Iraq war veteran Chanan Suarez-Diaz, and a diverse and talented group of local readers.
- Discussion on the Iraq War with author Anthony Arnove and Iraq War veteran Chanan Suarez-Diaz, presented through efforts of the Olympia Movement for Justice and Peace and the Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador.
- Jerusalem Dispossessed, a photo exhibition from the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, hosted at The Evergreen State College by Students Educating Students About the Middle East (SESAME).
Supported the work of the Olympia-Rafah Sister City Project including an enormous effort to seek official sister-city status from the City of Olympia. Supported ORSCP’s display and sale of Palestinian art from the Rafah Artists’ Association.Provided print and film resources to educate about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
In addition, the Corrie family supported productions of the play My Name is Rachel Corrie as they participated in post-play talkbacks and forums in Shepherdstown, West Virginia; Denver, Colorado; and Seattle, Olympia, and Chimacum, Washington. The Corries provided information and support to other theater groups in the US, Canada, and the world. They continue to speak about creating a just and lasting peace for Israel and Palestine at speaking venues throughout the country – in churches, theaters, colleges and high schools, and at conferences.
What is planned for 2008?
• Outreach and education about the Palestinian crisis through the Olympia-Rafah Mural Project. We are working to bring participants from Rafah to participate in the painting and celebration in spring 2008.
• Peace Works 2008—a major conference in Olympia in October.
• Expansion of our scholarship program to benefit students in Gaza.
• Continued partnership with the Olympia-Rafah Sister City Project, Palestinian-US sister city support, and expanded efforts to build connections with people in Rafah and support for grassroots effort there that assist women, children, and families.
• Participation in the Congressional Accompaniment Program with efforts to educate our members of Congress and to encourage them or their senior staff to spend time in both Israel and Palestine.
• Curriculum development around the story of Rachel Corrie, including work with the play My Name is Rachel Corrie and the book of Rachel Corrie’s writing, Let me Stand Alone to be published by W.W. Norton & Company in March 2008.
How Can You Help?
• Contact our office with questions and ideas – we love to hear from you!
• Tell your friends about the Rachel Corrie Foundation and point them to our website.
• Support us financially by clicking here. The majority of our financial support comes from individual donors, so your gift is vital to allowing us to continue our work.