The Mossawa Center, Advocacy Center for Palestinian Arab citizens in Israel, is a non-profit, non-governmental organization established in 1997, that aims to promote the economic, social, cultural and political rights of the Palestinian citizens in Israel , and the recognition of this community a a national indigenous minority, with their own national, cultural and historical distinctiveness. The Center develops programs to promote a democratic society, and acts against all forms of discrimination based on race, nationalism, religious affiliation , social status, gender, and disabilities.
In Arabic, "mossawa" means "equality", and the Mossawa Center's mission is to achieve equal rights for the 1.5 million Arab citizens of Israel.
In advancing its mission of equal rights attainment, the Mossawa Center utilizes various methods, including advocacy in the Israeli Knesset (Parliament) and government, socio-economic research and analysis, public information campaigns, capacity building with a broad network of Arab NGOs, cooperative work with Local Councils as well as Israeli based and international NGOs, and community activism particularly with Arab youth.
To achieve its goals and establish a solid network, the Mossawa Center cooperates with other NGOs, local councils and elected representatives of society, as well as international and local human rights organizations and diplomatic embassies. The Center's staff are involved in every aspect of programming, including advocacy, analysis, outreach, public knowledge, social and political justice and change — including the improvement of the status of women. The activities that Mossawa implements focus on the empowerment of persons and organizations that cooperate to change the existing Palestinian situation.
Currently the Mossawa Center focuses on the following programs:
- Social and economic justice for Arab citizens in Israel
- Protection of human rights and anti-racism work
- Political mobilization through advocacy for policy change
- Capacity building for Arab local councils and NGOs
- International advocacy and cooperation
- Local and international youth programs
The Center publishes position papers and policy analysis and disseminates them to political and social activists.