Press: Hand­ma­de wood decoration


20. November 2020

On Novem­ber 16th the following arti­cle by Jani­na Hardung about the work of Lifegate and the German support asso­cia­ti­on Tor zum Leben e.V. appeared in the news­pa­per „Schwet­zin­ger Zeitung”:

Peop­le with disa­bi­li­ties are often not real­ly seen and live on the margins of socie­ty. In the West Bank this is even more extre­me than in Germa­ny, for examp­le. That is why the non-profit asso­cia­ti­on „Tor zum Leben – Lifegate Rehabilitation” supports the work in the West Bank from Germa­ny – that is the basic idea. But there’s more to it than that.

Micha­el Müller has been a member of the board of direc­tors of the asso­cia­ti­on for many years and has presen­ted the work in Beit Jala and the constant­ly growing network in the adult educa­ti­on cent­re (VHS) showing many pictures. Actual­ly, this was suppo­sed to be a lectu­re evening. But due to the coro­na virus, it had to be cancelled.

In the run-up to Christ­mas, the VHS always choo­ses a project or an asso­cia­ti­on to which it will provi­de support. That is why the products from Pales­ti­ne will be avail­ab­le there in the coming weeks. These inclu­de an olive oil from Sama­ria – and also handi­c­rafts by the local peop­le with disabilities.

Buil­ding many bridges

Lifegate has been working for almost 30 years in Beit Jala, the cent­re and heart of an exten­si­ve rehabilitation network. Under the roof of the Lifegate Cent­re, which was opened in 2017, there are work­shops, thera­py and school rooms, a restau­rant and the admi­nis­tra­ti­on. „We are working at the inter­face of three world reli­gi­ons with their deman­ds on the city of Jeru­sa­lem and we want to build as many small brid­ges as possi­ble between hosti­le camps and make recon­ci­lia­ti­on possi­ble,” says Micha­el Müller. The orga­niz­a­ti­on needs the money for ortho­pe­dic aids, for examp­le. „The child­ren are still growing, so the prosthe­ses or wheel­chairs have to be adap­ted,” he says. Micha­el Müller did his commu­ni­ty service abroad in the 1990s, and many young peop­le did the same during this time. That is why Lifegate has a big network all over the world.

„Peop­le with disa­bi­li­ties have a low social stan­ding. By working in the work­shops – for examp­le for embro­ide­ring bags – their stan­ding rises within the fami­ly and socie­ty,” says Müller. Thus, for a „peace process from below”, a commit­ment to joint respon­si­bi­li­ty and soli­da­ri­ty for acti­ve inclu­si­on arises – that is the motto of the asso­cia­ti­on. Help for self-help beco­mes alive, is reco­gni­zed and promo­ted in this center.

Among others, the Lutheran paris­hes Brühl, Ketsch and Schwet­zin­gen, the Roman Catho­lic parish Brühl/​Ketsch, the Lutheran Diaco­nic Asso­cia­ti­on and the Lutheran Adult Educa­ti­on Center Rhein-Neckar-Süd, the Lebens­hil­fe Regi­on Mannheim/​Schwetzingen/​Hockenheim as well as Bildung & Begeg­nung Paläs­ti­na mit Lifegate Rehabilitation (Educa­ti­on & Encoun­ter Palestine).

Impres­si­ve pictures

Waltraud Kieber-Weiblen from the lutheran church commu­ni­ty of Brühl has also been there herself – and brought pictures with her. „In three trips, my husband and I have seen many things. It was very inte­res­ting and impres­si­ve, but you have to be tough. That’s why we wanted to do some­thing and we are now helping to make it better known,” she explains. Lebens­hil­fe, which has been united since July and is now called Regi­on Mannheim/​Schwetzingen/​Hockenheim, is facing simi­lar chal­len­ges. Mana­ging Direc­tor Kris­ti­na Funk not only sees the paral­lel in the name of the asso­cia­ti­ons with the word „life” – the scope of duties is simi­lar. „We allow the diver­si­ty of life in every possi­ble way. Actual­ly, we also plan trips, which is why Lifegate is so inte­res­ting for us. Unfor­tu­n­a­te­ly, we have to put that on hold for the time being,” she says.

Müller also noti­ces the lack of tourism. Pales­ti­ne is a magnet for visi­tors. They have also leased a guest house there, which is loca­ted next to a former monas­te­ry. There, disad­van­ta­ged, main­ly young locals work in the service. There, too, the inco­me is now lacking. To support Lifegate, by the way, inte­res­ted parties do not have to be members of the association.


Arti­cle in original

Here you can down­load the origi­nal arti­cle as pdf-docu­ment. Many thanks to the Schwet­zin­ger Zeitung! 


Work­shop sale

  • Conta­ct persons: Chris­ti­ne Mohr and Ceci­lia Monsalve
  • Address: Albert-Einstein-Stras­se 25g, 97941 Tauberbischofsheim
  • E‑mail:
  • Tele­pho­ne: 0049–9341-8463720 or 0049–151-55027777
  • Fax: 0049–9341-8463722

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