Final News from Bethlehem

Posted in Blog on 2nd January 2010

Liz At last we are filing our final blog, not from Bethlehem, but from the comfort of our own homes.

The last few days in Palestine were very busy. We made up as many of the sessions we had missed due to the religious holiday as possible, finished off the Booklet we had prepared to aid trainees, and undertook a mad round of visits and farewells from all our friends and colleagues in Bethlehem.

On the last but one day, we worked in the School, and presented certificates to staff. They all gave a glowing account of their experiences to the Deputy Head Teacher. I have since heard that they are setting up a timetable for January, and are planning to work in pairs initially until they feel confident enough to work alone in this way.

On our final morning in the Village, we were treated to a terrific send off with chocolate cake. You can see our thank-you present in the previous blog. There were lots of hugs and good wishes, with everyone asking us when we would return to visit them, and carry on with more training. Staff at the Village have been in touch to say the wooden Music Chest Hannah and I commissioned has been delivered. It will be decorated after the Christmas holidays by staff and children who took part in our sessions. I hope to get some photos and will post them here for everyone to see.

We spent the night before our flight in a hotel in Jerusalem. This was a great idea, as it gave us a little more time to adjust to life away from the Village and Bethlehem. It was a strange experience, however, dining in a restaurant that evening, and reflecting that most of our friends in Bethlehem would not have been able to join us there due to restrictions on their movements.

To sum up , Hannah and I are very pleased with the way our work developed in the SOS Village and School. We realise this is only the beginning of Music as Therapy and Music Therapy in these settings, but feel there is the will and facility for these interventions to grow and make important contributions to people’s lives in the West Bank. We look forward to seeing what happens next, and hope we can continue to be involved in some way.

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