Italian Ngo's in the West Bank and Gaza Strip

Italian NGOs are committed to the promotion of development and collective participation in the context of Palestinian communities.
This commitment translates into a number of concrete initiatives and experiences in various fields; funding is also provided by Italian Regions, local authorities and the EU.
In the context of the Italian Development Cooperation Unit in Jerusalem, a Department for the coordination of activities of Italian NGOs in Palestine has been operative from 2005 to 2010, promoted by the Italian Foreign Office (MAE).
The aim of this Unit is to strengthen and coordinate NGO activities, identify viable project proposals, and create opportunities for stakeholder meetings.  
Since 2008, under the 80/2005 laws, Italian NGOs are entrusted with a number of emergency projects in West Bank, Gaza, East Jerusalem and Area C.

From 2008 until today the following has been granted: 

  • 19.100 Mln Euro for the Bilateral Emergency Channel;  
  • 35.908 Mln Euro for the Multibilateral Emergency Channel for a overall total of 55 Mln Euro. 

The NGO’s presence in Palestine is very solid and has been well structured for years.
These are the main Italian NGOs operating in Palestine: 

  • Aispo: Associazione Italiana per la Solidarietà tra i Popoli e ONG, recognized in 1985 by MAE and set up by two professionals from the San Raffaele hospital in Milan to promote cooperation in developing countries;
  • Acs: Since 1998 ACS is a non-denominational NGO with a special proven expertise in agriculture, including organic agriculture, and microfinance;
  • AvsiAVSI is an NGO founded in 1972 and is involved in over 100 development projects in 39 countries, including the Palestinian Territories;
  • Ats: Associazione di Terra Santa collects and promotes the conservation of Palestinian heritage gathered during the guardianship of the Holy Land. ATS was born from the need to provide qualified services, technical assistance and direct intervention in preserving cultural heritage;
  • CesviCooperazione e Sviluppo, is an independent humanitarian organization founded on 15 January 1985 in Bergamo, where its headquarters sit. Between 1994 and 2005 CESVI has worked in the Palestinian Territories on projects for children and in support of SMEs. IN 1996 CESVI reached an agreement with Centro Italiano per la Pace in Medio Oriente (Cipmo) to implement humanitarian projects throughout the Middle East. CESVI has been involved in Palestinian development projects since 1996; since 2000 it is committed to strengthening the Palestinian economy through cash for work initiatives and support for young people in Beit Leed;
  • CispComitato Internazionale per lo Sviluppo dei Popoli, is an NGO recognised as such by the 49/'87 laws. It works in the field of international development and social inclusion. It has been operating in Palestine (Gaza and West Bank) since 1995;
  • CissCooperazione Internazionale Sud Sud is a not-for-profit organisation set up in Palermo in 1985. In 1989 the Italian MAE afforded CISS NGO status, capable of implementing development projects in developing countries;
  • Cric: Centro Regionale di Intervento per la Cooperazione, founded in Reggio Calabria in 1983 as Associazione di Volontariato Internazionale. In 1986, it was recognized as an NGO by the MAE and it has since collaborated closely with the EU on education for development and international cooperation. In 1987 it joined COCIS (the NGO coordination entity). Since 1987 it also runs activities in support of civilian populations affected by conflict, working in Palestine since 1987;
  • Coopi:Cooperazione Internazionale is a non-denominational, independent Italian NGO founded in 1965. Today, COOPI operates in 25 countries with more than 150 development and emergency projects. COOPI is committed to reduce poverty in the Global South through sustainable development initiatives;
  • CospeIs a private, non-denominational and not-for-profit organisation. Since its establishment in 1983 it operates in the Global South, in Italy and Europe for intercultural dialogue, sustainable development, human rights, peace and justice amongst peoples. At present, Cospe is running over 100 projects in approximately 30 countries around the world:
  • DisViDisarmo e Sviluppo, was founded in October 1982 by a group of doctors formerly working in development in Mozambique and a group of concerned citizens from the city of Asti (Piedmont). DISVI focuses on socio-health issues and environmental matters, integrating technical and professional skills in its projects;
  • EducaidIs an NGO recognised by the Italian MAE founded in 2000. It involves organizations, socially-responsible businesses and individuals working in professional and ethical education and social initiatives in international and intercultural settings. EducAid operates in a number of countries supporting education projects and building capacity for the inclusion of all children in education, especially disadvantaged ones;
  • GvcGVC is a non-denominational development NGO recognized by the Italian MAE and the EU. Founded in Italy in 1971, today it operates in 27 countries in the Global South. GVC seeks to promote sustainable development that continues in time and brings about concrete results. These include: water, children, rights, education, employment, fighting AIDS, etc;
  • Medina Is an NGO working in development and international solidarity in the global south, supporting justice, equality, human rights and socio-environmental solidarity;
  • NexusNexus Emilia Romagna is a development NGO supported by CGIL Emilia Romagna. It was set up in 1993 and recognised by the Italian MAE in 2007. Nexus works in the field of international development to contribute to the improvement of standards of living and strengthening of democratic institutions, in respect of cultural differences and in light of the principles of self-determination of peoples;
  • OverseasOverseas was founded in 1971 by a group of volunteers from Modena. Initially the organisation focused on promoting “global development” through development projects in small rural communities in Sierra Leone, Tanzania and Zaire;
  • Oxfam Italia: Oxfam is one of the largest international confederations specialized in humanitarian aid and development projects. It is made up of 17 branches in different countries that collaborate with 3.000 local partners in over 90 countries to identify sustainable solutions for poverty and injustice. Oxfam Italia joined the Oxfam international confederation in 2010 and is built on the experiences of Ucodep, an Italian NGO operating with passion and professionalism for over three decades to improve the living conditions of thousands of poor people around the world to empower their future lives and for the enjoyment of human rights;
  • Terre des Hommes:Terre des hommes Italia onlus,is one of the most active and recognizable NGOs focusing on children’s rights in developing countries, without political, ethnic or religious discrimination. TDH is a member of the International Federation of Terre des homes with branches in Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, Syria; it operates in 72 countries through 1.164 projects. In Palestine TDH coordinates various projects;
  • Un Ponte Per: Is an organization of volunteers for international solidarity founded in 1991. Since then this NGO works to prevent new conflicts, especially in the Middle East and the Balkans, through awareness raising, cultural exchanges and international cooperation projects in partnership with local civil society organizations;
  • Vento di TerraSince 2006 VdT has operated in the fields of education, eco-architecture and SMEs. In Palestine it has set up two schools for local Bedouin communities. Its projects involving part of the Jordan Valley have caught the attention of the media and the UN. VdT supports two cooperatives producing traditional jewelry and leather sandals, distributed by Commercio Equo. VdT aims at initiating ongoing development processes and new techniques to replicate. In 2011 it set up an Infancy Centre for the Um al Nasser community in Gaza. VdT is also present in Haiti and Mozambique. Various VdT projects have achieved international recognition;
  • VisVolontariato Internazionale per lo Sviluppo is a formal NGO estalished in 1986. It is based on Christian principles and the charisma of Don Bosco, and it is part of the Centro Nazionale Opere Salesiane - CNOS. Its projects are almost exclusively in the field of education, including inclusion of street children, literacy, the protection of human rights and women’s emancipation, vocational training and the professional reintegration of poor and marginalized young people. For many years in Palestine, VIS has supported vocational training courses at the Salesian Technical School in Bethlehem for local young people.
  • RTMReggio Terzo Mondo RTM is an international voluntary non-governmental organization (NGO) inspired by Christian values. Since 1973, it has promoted international cooperation and solidarity projects in Africa, Central and South-Eastern Europe, Latin America, Western Balkans and Middle East as well as information, sensitization and development education activities in Italy.
    RTM’s mission consists in promoting people’s dignity, safeguard their fundamental rights and support the economical and social development processes, paying particular attention to people and environment.
    RTM operates through medium and long-term interventions with the active participation of local partners and the involvement of local communities.
    Fondazione Giovanni Paolo II 

Activities are focused on:

  • Social development (education, health, combating poverty),
  • Local economic growth (strengthening of micro-enterprise, support of agricultural activities,support for traditional arts and crafts) and
  • Protection and recovery of cultural and archaeological heritage.

Through a series of initiatives and concrete experiences made in various fields the Italian Ngo's work on the promotion of development and collective participation within Palestinian communities. Funds come from the Italian Regions, the local Italian Authorities and the European Union as well.

The total amount of Promoted Projects is equal to 10.973.931,53 Euro (6 initiatives have been approved in september 2013 and 4 in julne 2014).
The projects are:

For the year 2013-2014 the following projects have been promoted in the Emergency Sector for a total amount of 1.5 Mln Euro

Click here to download the updated list (in Italian only)