New Article: Kaufman, Peace as Opportunity for Social Justice

Kaufman, Roni. “Peace as Opportunity for Social Justice: Establishment of New Social Change Organizations in Israel in the Wake of the Oslo Peace Accords.” International Social Work (early view; online first).

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0020872816639369

 
Abstract

The social work profession is committed to the promotion of peace and social justice. It is often assumed that peacetime enables diverting resources and attention to the promotion of disadvantaged groups. However, little is known about the mechanisms. This study of the Israeli experience following the Oslo Peace Accords suggests that one potential mechanism is the development of social change organizations (SCOs) in the wake of peace. Findings indicate growth in SCO establishment in the periphery and small towns, in vulnerable groups, and in the Israeli Palestinian (Arab) citizen minority group. Implications for social work are suggested.

 

 

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New Article: Gewirtz-Meydan et al, Social Workers’ Policy Practice in Non-Profit Organizations

Gewirtz-Meydan, Ateret, Idit Weiss-Gal, and John Gal. “Social Workers’ Policy Practice in Non-Profit Human Service Organisations in Israel.” British Journal of Social Work (early view; online first).

 
URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcv138
 

Abstract

The study’s aim is to expand knowledge on the level of involvement in policy-related interventions (‘policy practice’, PP) among social workers employed by non-profit human service organisations (NPHSOs) in Israel, and on the motivational and facilitating factors associated with this. The sample consisted of 106 social workers employed in NPHSOs that include social advocacy as one of their goals. Findings revealed a relatively low level of involvement in PP. Level of involvement was associated with political efficacy, political interest, activity in political and professional organisations, civic and professional skills, and organisational support for PP. The strongest predictors were PP skills and organisational support. The study’s conclusion is that an understanding of involvement in PP must take into account both the degree to which an organisational context facilitates this type of practice and the individual factors that motivate PP involvement. As such, consolidation of PP among social workers should address both facilitating and motivational issues.

 

 

 

New Book: Hanafi et al, UNRWA and Palestinian Refugees

Hanafi, Sari, Leila Hilal, and Lex Takkenberg, eds. UNRWA and Palestinian Refugees. From Relief and Works to Human Development. Abingdon and New York: Routledge, 2014.

 

9780415715041

 

URL: http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9780415715041/

 

Abstract

Exploring the evolution of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), this book fills a lacuna in literature on the agency. It employs recent fieldwork in order to analyse challenges in programmes and service delivery, protection, camp governance, community participation, and camp improvement and reconstruction. The chapters examine the way UNRWA is adapting to a changing social, political and economic context, mostly within urban settings – a paradigmatic shift from understanding the Agency’s role as simply a provider of relief and services to one comprehensively supporting the human development of Palestinian refugees.

Examining the refugee debate using new disciplines and research frameworks, this collection aims to emphasise the centrality of the Palestinian refugee issue for Middle East peace-making and to contribute a better understanding of a unique agency. This book will be a useful aid for students and researchers with an interest in Middle East Studies, Politics, and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Table of Contents

Part I: Meeting Challenges in Programmes and Service Delivery

1 Realizing Self-Reliance through Microfinance – Allex Pollock

2 UNRWA’s ‘Traditional’ Programmes as a Catalyst for Human Development – Tjitske de Jong & Miriam Aced

Part II: Protection: From Concept to Practice

3 Incorporating Protection into UNRWA Operations – Mark Brailsford

4 Advancing Child Protection in Jordan, Lebanon, Occupied Palestinian Territory and Syria – Laurent Chapuis

Part III: Governance: The Camps and UNRWA

5 From Chaos to Order and Back: The Construction of UNRWA Shelters and Camps 1950- 1970– Kjersti Gravelsaeter Berg

6 UNRWA as ‘Phantom Sovereign’: Governance Practices in Lebanon – Sari Hanafi

Part IV: Civic Participation and Community Engagement

7 From Beneficiary to Stakeholder: An Overview of UNRWA’s Approach to Refugee Participation– Terry Rempel

8 Community Participation and Human Rights Advocacy: Questions Arising from the Campaign about the Right to Work of Palestinian Refugees in Lebanon – Sergio Bianchi

Part V: Camp Improvement/Reconstruction and Development

9 Dynamics of Space, Temporariness, Development and Rights in Palestine Refugees’ Camps– Mona Budeiri

10 Talbiyeh Camp Improvement Project and the Challenges of Community Participation: Between Empowerment and Conflict– Fatima Al-Nammari

11 Implementing the Neirab Rehabilitation Project: UNRWA’s Approach to Development in Syria’s Palestinian Refugee Camps– Nell Gabiam

12 The Urban Planning Strategy in Al-Hussein Palestinian Refugee Camp in Amman: Heterogeneous Practices; Homogeneous Landscape– Lucas Oesch

Part VI: Palestinian Refugees and Durable Solutions: A Role for UNRWA

13 UNRWA as Avatar: Current Debates on the Agency and their Implications – Rex Brynen

14 The Role of UNRWA in Resolving the Palestinian Refugee Issue – Leila Hilal