When the elderly and terminally ill people of Bethlehem reach the end of their lives, they have nowhere to turn. We believe that everyone deserves dignity, care and help to manage pain at the end of their life. That’s why our mission is to raise enough funds to build the city’s first ever hospice.
The real Bethlehem
Bethlehem, is a special place to a great many people in the world. It is special to Christians, to Judaism and to Islam. Many of Bethlehem’s inhabitants can trace their ancestry back to the time of Christ.
The world has an idealised view of Bethlehem. It is associated with Christmas and the events of 2000 years ago. Many forget that Bethlehem is also a living community facing the everyday challenges of everyday life in a new and emerging state – Palestine.
Among the many difficulties faced by the people of Bethlehem is the plight of its elderly citizens. Family is traditionally very strong in Palestine but significant numbers of older people find themselves isolated and alone after waves of emigration have seen their children and grandchildren move abroad. Unlike citizens in other countries Palestinians are not entitled to welfare support and this effects the elderly more than most.
Many of them face daily life isolated from their families, trapped in poverty and facing all the trials of getting old without any real support.
There is little industry and few resources. The main industry is tourism and in times of conflict or difficulty the tourists and pilgrims do not come. The economy suffers, unemployment rises still higher and poverty increases. In this cycle of events the elderly are among those who suffer most.
The Bethlehem Christmas ‘image’ masks the problems of everyday living for its elderly people and as such they are forgotten.
We want to be there for the forgotten people of Bethlehem, making sure they do have somewhere to turn to at the end of their lives. We want to be there to hold their hand, and to offer them a safe, caring environment, free from pain, suffering and loneliness.
Will you help us?
Looking at these premises in Bethlehem as a potential Care Centre/hospice.
Without pensions retirement is not an option in Bethlehem.
“Fatima is in her 80s and lives alone. Her children have moved away to find work and her other family have all passed. Fatima has been diagnosed with cancer and experiences constant, chronic pain. She cannot work, and there is no welfare state for her to fall back on. Fatima is in dire need of our help and support.”