In 2005, the Culture and Free Thought Association responded to community demands for opening an educational center serving children in the underserved communities in the southern part of ​​Khan Younis governorate. Modeled on the successful experiences of Al-Shrouq Wal Amal, CFTA, with the support of Welfare Association, built a center in Baten Essamien, one of the most densely populated areas in Khan Younis. Since its opening 10 years ago, the Nowwar Educational Center has regularly provided programs to 250 aged 6-12 years living in Khan Younis. Center programs also engage parents, as well as educators, practitioners, and other professionals engaged in the field of childhood and childhood education.

Open from 8:00 Am to 3:00 PM five days a week,

Like its sister center, Nowwar Center runs a wide range of active learning programs and activities in arts and culture, including fine arts, folk art, and drama; a play and learn program based on indoor and outdoor games;  and a window on technology. Nowwar also runs a special program called Nowwar’s. Each year the Center hosts a cultural festival, the traditional festival, winter and summer camps, childhood festivals, exhibitions, International Women's Day, a Marathon, and Ramadan activities.

Highlights in 2014

·  “Ban Ki Moon, We Are Here!” a play depicting the Lack of justice in the application of children's rights was performed by 8 children to an enthusiastic audience including representatives of legal organizations – human rights associations as well as family and other members of the community. Children used the play to open a discussion on their right to live in peace and engage with local human rights organization on child protection rights and conventions.

 ·   Over 46 children between the ages of 6-12 launched an advocacy campaign for the right to free health care for children between the ages of 3-6 years of age. Child advocates used art and video to raise awareness on the issue. A press conference organised by the children drew 200 people, including members of the local and international press. Children presented a fact sheet and discussed their field research and demands to have free health care

·       "Spotlight" an exhibition of the artwork of 120 children participating in the expressive arts activities at Nowwar The exhibition included photos, hand crafts as well as paintings and drawings. The artwork reflected the conditions shaping the lives of the child artists, the electricity shortages, the siege on Gaza and unemployment all featured strongly.

Our approach

The Center seeks to nurture a new generation capable of giving, sharing and taking responsibility by creating a healthy learning environment for the holistic and integrated development of children (6-12 years) in which every child is encouraged to continuously seek out new opportunities for discovery, experimentation, self-expression, knowledge-building, and connecting with others.

The Center’s approach is rooted in the understanding that healthy childhood development begins with ensuring that each child is at the center of her/his own learning processes. Learning is pursued through active participation in an open and diverse range of individual and collective cultural and educational games and activities rooted in the fundamental belief in self-expression.  Recognizing that each child has her/his own unique set of skills and capacities, children are both encouraged to take responsibility for their own learning and at the same time support and respect others’ learning efforts. Conversation and debate are used as alternatives to punishment and abuse and the Club works to build children’s sense of responsibility and mutual respect as well as an awareness of their rights.