Elias Sim’an El-Yateem
Fahd Al- Atrash
Jeries Al- Atrash
Atallah & Nawal Workshop
Nimir G. Rishmawi
Hanna Judeh Is’eed
Issa Hanna Ghanem
Khalil Saliba Qumsieh
Younan Salameh Qumsieh
Iyad Naji Qumsieh
Raja Saliba Bannoura
Naji Jiries Qumsieh
The Holy Family Workshop was established by Ashraf Jaraiseh in 1991, it has three workers. The Holy Family workshop produces many models of olive wood items such as Crosses, Figures, nativities, charms and bells.
Is’eed Mother of Pearl Workshop is well known in producing Mother of Pearl Brooches. This workshop was established in 1971 and the number of workers is three. Michael Is’eed is the founder of this workshop. The workshop produces Mother of Pearl Crosses, Shells, Wall Plaques, and Jewelry Boxes in many sizes.
George Gharib Workshop was founded in 1986 and it has three workers. The workshop produces many kinds of Olive Wood Pendants and Christmas Ornaments and nativities. It has three workers. Also they have a line of laser products.
George Butros Gharib, I was born in 1962 in a place called Bet Sahour. I lived in a small house where during the winter time the cold and wind entered inside the house. As a consequence of the political situation a lot of children could not finish their education; one was me, so I started to work in different olive wood workshops. 1986 I established my own workshop, but the bad luck did not abandon me, our unstable situation impeded the payments of the customers. In 1988 I got married with my first degree cousin Ibtisam, she is a nurse at Caritas baby Hospital in Bethlehem, my 4 first daughters died because the blood relationship with my wife and after these 4 daughters we had 2 boys and one girl, they are at school and at their free time they help in my work. My dream is to give them the best education and to teach them my work so they will be prepared in more than one field. In 2003 I had made a surgery as it appeared non malignant glandular cancer; In 2009 I had made a kidney transplant, The Palestinian Government paid for the costs of surgeries. After surgeries I stopped working for a long time, my income was from HLHCS and my wife’s work. The best phone call I’m receiving is from HLHCS asking me to cooperate for an olive wood order, I start assuming that I will be able to pay my family duties and to buy my medicine without affecting the balance of my family. Also I have very nice feelings when HLHCS is calculating my cost and expenses that I will have in producing an article, knowing my profit and giving a fair wage to the employees that are working at my workshop.
Tamer Workshop was established in 1970 by Elias Sim’an El-Yateem. The workshop has seven workers who produce many items of Mother of Pearl Shells; The workshop produces Mother of Pearl Crosses, Shells, Wall Plaques, Jewelry Boxes in many sizes. Now with his sons Hanna and Nizar they are also offering Olive wood crafts.
Odeh Workshop for Olive Wood. The workshop was established in 1983 by Majed Odeh and it has twelve workers. Jewelry Boxes were their main products, yet the workshop produces a variety of olive wood items such as candle holders, Holy Families, toys, nativities, figures, all handmade. Also they have a line of laser products.
Majed Odeh was born in 1956, married to Maisa Sahouri in 1986, father of 1 girl and 3 boys, all are working with him at his workshop, except of Ihab who is studying Lawyer. Majed has his own workshop since 1983, where he attempts to preserve the beauty and spiritual depths of the past at an olive wood figures. Faithful to their inherited profession, Father and children continued what they had learned from their grandparents and adding to it. A one room humble workshop, the smell of Palestinian olive wood, hands working elegantly in production of different items of olive wood handicrafts.
Al-Farah for Eastern Handicrafts produces many kinds of olive wood crosses in many sizes and many kinds of candleholders, nativities and figures This workshop which established in 1986 by Khader Khair and has eleven workers. Also they have a line of laser products.
Khader Khair learnt olive wood handicraft working everyday with his uncle when he was coming back from school. In 1987 he started to study Clinical Lab. in Ramallah, as a consequence of the political situation and restrictions on the free movement and as the case of many others young people, Khader was forced to leave his studies. Khader comes from a poor family he hadn't any instrument and started making few crosses and brooches with knives and screwdrivers in his house; progressively he started to buy the necessary equipment. In 1994 he got married with a nurse who is helping him with the household expenses. Today he has one of the most successful workshops of the cooperative, with 14 workers, 6 of them are women working at his workshop, and furthermore he gives work to women at their houses. His workshop was at his house’s garage but after a lot of seminars made by Holy Land Handicraft Cooperative Society he was convinced that this is damaging the environment, health and security of his family and neighbors, so now his place is located at an industrial area. Now his aim is to improve this sector. HLHCS, in coordination with CRS are working hard to improve this sector. The Financial support for the renovations is provided by Catholic Relief Services, SERRV International and Initiative Christlicher Orient.
Al- Hilal for Mother of Pearl Workshop was originated by Johnny Hilal in 1975. The workshop has three workers and is managed by Awad’s son, Johny Hilal. The workshop produces Mother of Pearl Crosses, Shells, Wall Plaques, and Jewelry Boxes in many sizes.
Fahd Al- Atrash Factory for Eastern Handicrafts was established in 1980 by Fahd Al-Atrash and his sons. This factory has fifteen workers. The kinds of items that are produced are Wall Plaques, Figures, Jewelry Boxes, Shells and Crosses made out of Mother of Pearl.
Bethlehem Handicrafts has fifteen workers. It was established in 1979 by Jamal Musallam Bannoura. This workshop produces all kind of Figures in many sizes. Many families including this family, “the Bannoura family”, learned to beautifully hand carves religious products from olive wood, as Christian pilgrims come to the Holy Land in greater numbers and desired items to remember their pilgrimage with. This skill has been improved upon and passed down from father to son for many generations in their family, with each generation adding new stylistic ideas and new means to improve the crafting they are proud to be considered part of the living Christian heritage of the Holy Land.
Salman for Eastern Handicrafts was founded in 1950 by Anton. The workshop has twenty workers who produce all kinds of rosaries and figures in many sizes. Anton works with his brother As’ad who is also a member at the Holy Land Handicraft Cooperative Society.
Al-Atrash Workshop was created by Jeries Al- Atrash in 1996. The workshop produces a wide variety of Olive Wood Crosses. The workshop currently employs one worker in addition to the owner.
Al-Shady Workshop was established in 2001 by Shady Ghareeb. The workshop produces artistic Grottos and it has only one worker. Now Michael Ghareeb is in charge of the workshop.
Abu- Hiba Workshop has five workers. The workshop was founded in 1995 by Attallah Ghareeb. The main products of the workshop are Grottos and Crosses in many sizes.
Since the beginning Atallah and Nawal are working together.
"Nawal is the backbone of our house", says Atallah Gharib, "she keeps us on our feet and always helps us think of good things and how to move away from the bad ones." Nawal laughs and says “It's beautiful to sacrifice everything for the family, instead of taking all the credit. She did not have the opportunity to complete her studies, yet still Nawal handles the challenges of the world with grace, all while providing for her family financially and supporting them morally.
"We are very happy that the Holy Land Handicraft Cooperative Society renovated our workshop." "This is the best gift we have ever received; now we are working in a better place, a healthier place." also, thanks because always are taking our products at a very fair price
The Shepherds Field Artistic Workshop was established in 1976 by Nimir G. Rishmawi, it has six workers and they produce all models of Olive Wood figurines, Nativity and Last Supper scenes in addition to artistic Chess Sets.
Abu- Sa’da for Eastern Handicrafts was established in 1970 by Kamal Abu-Sa’da. The workshop has eight workers. The main products are all kinds of carved Figures.
Abu-Farha for Eastern Handicrafts was established in 1981 by Naji Abu-Farha, the workshop has three workers. The products of this workshop are all kinds of charms and small crosses. Also they have a line of laser products.
Is’eed Workshop for Mother of Pearl was originated in 1971 by Karam Is’eed. The workshop has three workers and the main products are rosaries made out of olive wood and Mother of Pearl. In 2020 Karam opened a new workshop for olive wood products where offer candles and kitchen crafts
Hanna Judeh Is’eed: Hanna produces rosaries made of Olive Wood beads. Recently he is specialized in making rosaries made of the core of the olive fruit itself. The workshop also produces crosses and brooches made of mother of pearl.
Issa Hanna Ghanem: The Ghanems’ workshop was established in 1975 and has 5 workers. The workshop produces a variety of needle work and embroidery, including Shawls, Stalls, Cushion covers, bags, purses etc.
Khalil Saliba Qumsieh: Mother of Pearl workshop. Was established in 1964 by Khalil. He has 5 workers. They produced all kind of MOP brooches, peace doves, earrings, bracelets, crosses and Mother of Pearl jewelry boxes in all sizes.
Younan Salameh Qumsieh: He established his workshop in 1960. His workshop produced a mixture of Olive Wood and Mother of Pearl products. He has three workers in addition to his son, Hisham who is now running the workshop and the current member of HLHCS instead of his father.. He produces all kinds and sizes of O.W and MOP crosses, Jerusalem crosses, rosaries, wall plaques.
Rosaries and candles factory. Iyad’s father was the first in being member at HLHCS, In 2016, he transferred the shares to his son Iyad.
Raja Saliba Bannoura: Shepherd’s Field Work Shop was established in 1970, has 12 workers, the workshop produces figures and nativities available in many varieties of design and sizes.
The story of Nagla Bannoura Issa Saliba,
Nagla Bannoura Issa Saliba is an old woman from Palestine. Despite all the challenges she has faced in life, her hard work and determination paved a better life for her children and even grandchildren. Nagla got married very young and despite growing up in a male dominated society, she always believed that women could also work and help provide for the family. When Nagla lived in Jordan with her husband, she wasn’t able to work .
“It wasn’t easy at all for women to leave the house to go looking for work”
When her children were old enough to go to school, she decided to return to Palestine even though it meant being separated from her husband. She was able to save some of the money her husband sent to her and with her savings she bought a piece of land.
Issa E’maya: Issa E’maya, Olive Wood factory, he has 3 workers, the workshop produces animals as per camels, donkeys and etc.
The workshop was established by his older brother Nakhla in 1965 to produce mother of pearl items. The workshop has five workers and they produce brooches, small nativities, crosses all olive wood.
Elias Nicola Musleh
Ghattas Olive Wood: with his family established his workshop in 1990. His workshop produced a mixture of Olive Wood products as per nativities and plaques with gyps.
Seham AL Tawil
Imad Abu Sa’da
Margo Khair, it the beginning, her husband had a mother of pearl workshop, when he passed away; she started to work with a variety of embroidery, including bags, purses, bracelets etc.