Our story

General background

Since 1948 to the present, Palestinian refugee camps have been living witnesses to the Nakba (Catastrophe of 1948) inflicted upon the Arab-Palestinian people.  Deteriorating social, economic, health, and environmental conditions have made the camps the most desperate places to live in Palestine.  These general conditions that exist in Palestinian refugee camps create the need for organizations and facilities capable of providing appropriate programs to refugees as they are the most disadvantaged sector of Palestinian society. 

Yafa Cultural Center (YCC)

YCC is a non-profit cultural NGO that was formed through an initiative by the Committee for the Defense of Palestinian Refugee Rights in 1996. YCC works to improve the cultural and intellectual condition of Palestinians by providing them with a space to develop their talents and skills and to enrich their awareness of their national rights through civic education particularly on democracy and human rights. This is done through a wide variety of activities and programs that are designed and implemented by distinguished volunteers with much experience. Through this work, YCC aims to empower Palestinians in fostering a strong and independent identity, and to enable positive accomplishments in the future while escaping the negative effects of the on-going Israeli occupation.

Establishment of YCC

YCC was established in 1996 by an educated group of individuals from similar social backgrounds with the aim of promoting self-awareness among Palestinian refugees, especially children, about their plight. It aims to foster an understanding of civil society that is based on freedom of thought and expression and to build a generation of young enlightened Palestinians who are aware of their rights and are capable of shaping a better future. As such, YCC works toward building a local community that holds firm to principles of freedom and independence and that can assert its legally enshrined rights, most importantly the right of return. YCC also aims to develop the role of women in their local communities, and works to improve their social position by encouraging their active participation in the development of Palestinian society as a whole.

YCC was formally licensed in 1998 by the Palestinian Ministry of Culture. It was the first cultural center to obtain a license in the Nablus region. In 2000, YCC obtained legal recognition by the Ministry of Interior in accordance with a new law for charitable organizations passed by the Palestinian Legislative Council that year.