Health and trauma in Palestine – closing spbr21

Every year after small park BIG RUN we link up with our partners in Palestine. It is a wonderful event; and this year it also an opportunity to learn from and show solidarity with Palestinian people.

This year was no exception – it proved to be a wonderful and important moment of solidarity and friendship. 

At the start we had a very moving tribute to Fatima Al Ajarma, who died this year at the age of 100, after a lifetime of resistance demanding her right to return to her land in Ajjur.

You can watch the tribute from her granddaughter, Kholoud, read by Sheffield PSC activist Annie O’Gara:

You can also read the tribute here.

As our overall theme this year was health and health inequalities in Palestine we had two speakers that gave us insights into different aspects of health care.

We heard about the impact of Covid-19 on healthcare in Aida Refugee Camp, Bethlehem from Dr Mohammed Abu Sroar. Listen to the audio here

And from Dr Osama Freina, Director of Gaza Community Mental Health Programme in the Southern Part of the Gaza Strip, we heard about the describe terrible impact of violence on children. Listen to the audio of Musheir Al Farra interviewing and then translating here

As in past years we had a link up with our partners at the Never Stop Dreaming Charity Association ( – one of the organisations that we have worked with for many years and will benefit directly from your fundraising efforts. You can watch a moving and heart-warming video of the children singing here:

Carrying the flag for Palestine

Last year Judy, a local supporter of Palestine Solidarity and of the small park BIG RUN, carried the flag around Meersbrook for 72km and talked to loads of people about why she did this. She is doing the same this year. Say hello if you see her. This is her blog

Hello. I’m Judy and I’ve lived in Meersbrook, Sheffield for 14 years.

Standing in Meersbrook Park

As a teenager in the 60s I did the ‘hitchhiking across North Africa’ thing and the ‘kibbutz’ thing and i was blissfully ignorant of the reality and the history until relatively recently.

I am the same age as the State of Israel and I credit the small park BIG RUN with focussing my awareness on the Nakba – ‘the Catastrophe’ – that resulted for Palestinian people.

So last year, as we could not gather together in the park as we usually do, my activity was to walk a kilometre for every year of my life, every year that Palestinians have been enduring injustice.

I wrote a diary about that highly rewarding experience; in fact it was so rewarding that I am doing it again, this year. 73k with my Palestinian flag.

You can read about Judy’s adventures here


We cannot sit back and plan this year’s run without mentioning, as a priority, the awful events in Sheikh Jarrah and the storming of Al Aqsa  mosque in Jerusalem and the subsequent bombing of Gaza. We, the organisers of small park BIG RUN feel deeply outraged, angry, and upset.

The daily injustices that are meted out to Palestinians by Israeli authorities have now escalated into yet another attempt to stamp out all resistance.

As you can see in these pictures: these are our friends, people we and you, small park BIG RUN supporters, have run with; people we have talked to over a crackly phone at the end of the Fun Run in previous years.

We want to give context to the media reports many of you will have seen and give you a sense of what you can do to help.

spbr-the-Sheffield Way

In our second year of going ‘DIY’ we wanted to highlight things we know people are up to , in case you need some inspiration or want to join in and do the same.

Some innovative people from Sheffield Palestine Womens Scholarship Fund are taking on the DIY activity to new heights by adapting The Sheffield Way .

SPBR walkers in 2020

The walkers will be taking with them a Palestinian flag and an olive branch that came from Palestine (and which has been at all of the small park BIG RUN events)

There are 6 legs to this walk and it is 53 miles in total. Leaving from Meersbrook Park at midday on Saturday June 19th, the walkers will return on Sunday June 20th at midday. You can find out more about the route by downloading the maps and you are welcome to make your own pace on any section – or all of them! We will be publishing the expected times of arrival at the checkpoints in case you would like to meet up with the main group.

Dont forget to enter via Eventbrite

You can download the SPBR-The-Sheffield-Way maps from here

small park BIG RUN 2021 now open for entry!

You can enter the run here.

Like last year it is a DIY run soas to avoid a mass congregation in our local park and keep us all safe. And just like last year we are looking forward to running , skipping , walking, hopping, juggling – or whatever we choose to do – with comrades in Palestine and elsewhere in the world over the same 24 hours.

You can find out more about the theme for this year’s run here. We will be publishing a programme nearer the time