Murhaba (Hi)! My name is Rayyan; I am 20 years old and I am from a city named Birmingham in Great Britain. For me, the reasons for which I decided to come to Palestine are plentiful. Firstly, as a Law student – I have just finished my first year at the University of Oxford – the Lawyers in Palestine program has propelled me into the heart of key legal issues: I have had the opportunity to meet with local lawyers, activists and government officials to hear, first-hand, their experiences of the occupation in both legal and non-legal contexts. This has, in turn, formed the backbone of my time in Al-Khalil (Hebron).
However, more importantly, the cultural immersion into Palestinian life has, above all, been
extremely formative. I have been lucky enough to live with a host family (the Murads) during my two weeks in Hebron. Although, at first, I was quite anxious to do so, the Murads
welcomed me into their family as their own! As a city, I have found Hebron to be great place to stay. Along my daily walk to the centre, King Faisal Street served as a microcosm of life in Palestine: each day and night, I was exposed to the various foods (so much Falafel!),
produce, stools, and people, many of whom often greeting me and welcoming me to
Palestine – not forgetting the occasional Shisha in the evenings! In our free time, I have
traveled to Palestine and Israel. In turn, this has allowed me to view contrasts between
the different ways of life in different Palestinian cities, as well as serving as a great means to try (and maybe fail at) speaking my newly learned Arabic! Above all, my short time at the Palestinian Centre has been beyond profound. I have met a diverse range of people from all around the world – and with some, I have formed friendships that will last a lifetime. The memories I have gained here I will forever cherish and will shape the way in which I grow as a person. Shukran!