Advocacy in Medicine

Abdulraheem Mahlawi, 23, lives in Gaza with all 10 of his family members in a single household. A remarkable student, he completed his secondary school with excellence, achieving a cumulative mark of 97%.  Abdulraheem has been with Al Fakhoora since the beginning in 2009, and is currently doing well in his fifth year of studying medicine at the Islamic University in Gaza (IUG).
 
Abd, to his friends (pronounced Abid), has gone from a very quiet student, totally focused on his studies, into a student leader that has been able to mobilize and motivate students to be part of Al Fakhoora’s advocacy activities.
 
Abdulraheem says “I was part of the Virtual Majlis, and More Than Words activities, they were unique experience that contribute turning you from self-responsibility to community responsibility. I felt that I represented my community, so I should be honest and fair in reflecting the real life. This pushed me to dig deep into the ground and research information about the Palestinian issue.” 
 
Abd adds, “I think these activities have been very influential, in the UK, students were even campaigning for the topics we discussed and for the solidarity of the Palestinian people. With regards to American students, they have become more enlightened about the Palestinian issue – In fact, if we did such advocacy work for the last 66 years we could achieved so much for Palestine – I think we should continue doing such work and pass this experience to other young people to carry on these efforts.”
 
Abd is practical about the financial support as well, “In fact, the scholarship released the family from financial and psychological pressure, this would definitely have influenced my studies, I think, I would have been able to continue my studies as relaxed as I am now.” 
 
Abd concluded, “The education in Gaza particularly for Medicine is very expensive, especially if there are two in the family who would like to study it. The scholarship was not only about feelings; Al Fakhoora pushed our performance through its activities as well and I am planning to push my career forward in Gaza, as I have contributed to advocacy in the Gaza Strip, I will be helping to advance communications, particularly among physicians and students, to be a better and safer doctor.”
 

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