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‘Itach-Ma’aki – Women Lawyers for Social Justice’
Briefing at the Arlington Convention Center in Camden, 9:30am, Friday 17th June.
Join us for a special briefing with Itach Ma’aki – Women Lawyers for Social Justice, who work to improve Palestinian and Jewish women in Israel’s status in society. Hear from Palestinian Israeli Advocate and co-chair of Itach Ma’aki Hazar Alhad and lawyer Dana Myrtlebaum, the founder and director of the “City for All” Program at Itach- Ma’aki.
During the session we will explore the “City for All” programme, promoting gender equality in local governance in Israel, and the implementation of the UN resolution 1325 which looks to include women in high level peace negotiations.
Other key work from Itach Ma’aki includes their women’s legal aid hotline (nearly 3,000 calls a year), and their work to advance Bedouin women. Our briefing with Itach Ma’aki will create an opportunity for our supporters to learn more about this relatively unknown grantee.
Co-Chair of Itach Ma’aki
Advocate Hazar Alhadi is a Palestinian woman raised in the town of Taybeh and co-chair of the board of Itach Ma’aki, Women Lawyers for Social Justice. Hazar was called to the Israeli Bar in 2008. She has been a long-time advocate and activist for the Arab Palestinian minority in Israel and with a particular focus on women’s rights. She has worked as an advocate for women’s rights at a number of leading organizations, including at Itach Ma’aki as a staff lawyer.
Hazar is a founder and former board member of Tishreen, a community organization working to advance the status of women and youth in Taybeh. In addition, Hazar is a co-founder of “Nahnu” as a feminist and political movement, which worked to increase the participation of Taybeh’s women in the municipality and called on local parties to encourage women to stand for local election and ensure women were included on their election lists.
In 2013, Hazar volunteered as a regional coordinator on behalf of Tishreen to take part in a coalition along with other NGOs in Israel, funded by the NIF. The goal of the coalition was to increase and encourage the participation of Arab women in the upcoming local municipal elections. Hazar initiated a round table with the press to engage them to cover this issue in the media. In addition, initiated two round tables with local NGOs, Arab women candidates and activists. The work that she did encouraged women to take an active part in municipal affairs, either by voting or by running themselves. Hazar is also a former board member of the Mossawa Center, the Advocacy Centre for Arab Citizens.
Lawyer at Itach Ma’aki
Dana Myrtenbaum is an Israeli public interest lawyer and social innovator. For more than 20 years, Dana has designed innovative programs that give voice to the needs of marginalized citizens and to Jewish and Arab women. As the founder and director of the “City for All” Program at Itach- Ma’aki, she currently promotes Gender Mainstreaming within Israeli local governments’ plans and actions. Since 2017, she has implemented the program in the cities Rishon LeZion, Tayibe, Akko and Haifa and since 2021 she leads “Safe in Matte Asher”-a collective impact to prevent gender-based violence in Matte Asher regional authority. In previous years, Dana had founded the Legal Leaders Program at the Haifa University Law Faculty, (2004-2014) which was later replicated nationally as a model for legal activism interfacing academia with the community.
She also established The National Program for Young Women at risk (13-25), and developed a new policy that recognizes and meets the needs of young at-risk women and men in housing regulations. The resulting policy change added $500,000 USD to the annual budget of the Israeli Ministry of Social Services (2015). Dana is a 2003-2004 New Israel Fund Legal Leadership Fellow. She received her Masters in Law from the American University, Washington College of Law (2004), and her Masters in Public Administration from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government (2017).