Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI)
Each year, EAPPI sends around 100 "ecumenical accompaniers" (EAs) from different countries to vulnerable communities in Palestine, where their task is to protect and show solidarity with those communities, and advocate on their behalf. EAs also accompany the Israeli peace movement in their activities.
The project co-ordinates, places, oversees, and trains the EAs, and engages them together with national coordinators in advocacy activities upon their return to their sending countries.
Through the work of the EAs and their local partners, it exposes the violence of the occupation, violations of human rights and humanitarian law, and advocates for their end. Together with the Jerusalem Interchurch Centre (JIC), EAPPI arranges international ecumenical visits to join EAs for short gatherings and solidarity actions, like observing checkpoints, gate watches at the wall, accompanying children to school, etc.
Creating an awareness of what churches and peace groups in the Occupied Palestinian Territories and Israel are hoping for, and encouraging more churches and partners to do advocacy that might affect their countries' foreign policy on the Middle East are other objectives of the project.
The EAs' tasks include:
- Accompanying young children facing harassment from settlers to their schools.
- Women's, youth and outreach programmes within local Christian communities, and working in refugee camps.
- In relation to the wall, speaking out, monitoring gate opening times, helping people cross the gates, participating in demonstrations.
- Partnering with and accompanying organizations in the Israeli Peace movement often marginalized within Israeli society as well as Palestinian organizations based in Jerusalem.
- Writing articles showing the consequences of the occupation.
- Participating in hearings at the UN, meeting with politicians etc.