Institute for Middle East Understanding

Another bomb blast, another day. That’s usually how it is for people reading the news in the comfort of their homes away from Palestine and Israel. Unfortunately (and unfairly), it’s the suicide bombings that catch most of the headlines – what’s the other side of the story? That’s what the Institute for Middle East Understanding (IMEU) andLena Khalaf, 31, co-founder, hope to tell. IMEU is a non-profit aimed at proving journalists with quick access to accurate and relevant information – including commentaries, analysis, photos, and more – regarding Palestine-related issues, both political and cultural. It’s a tough task, but Lena and IMEU are geared up to shift public perception shaped by too many years of misinformation. Find out more in this week’s Non-Profit Spotlight.

About the Non-profit

IMEU is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing journalists with quick access to information about Palestine and the Palestinians, as well expert sources, both in the United States and the Middle East.

Most notable milestones

IMEU has designed a world-class website to serve journalists by providing well-organized background information, up-to-date commentary and analysis from the media, and photographs, maps and other essential documents about Palestine and the Palestinians in an easy-to-use format.

In just eight months, IMEU has placed numerous humanizing stories and opinion pieces in mainstream media outlets.

IMEU has proactively sent emails with original analysis of breaking news and important events to over 1500 journalists.

What’s the niche?

We focus on the needs of journalists. We understand the demands of deadlines and the critical need to have authentic and credible sources available at the drop of a hat. We are able to provide those sources and work with the journalists to meet any other needs they have as they develop a story. We also focus not only on politics and conflict, but on Palestinian art and culture, including Palestinian-American poets, playwrights and comedians.

What’s the biggest challenge?

Decades of misinformation about and de-humanization of Palestinians.

What’s in store for the future?

More accurate stories about Palestine and the Palestinians in the American media.

Who would you like to be contacted by?

Journalists from any and all media: television, radio, newspaper, magazine, and website reporters, editors, and producers. We have many compelling stories to share, and we can also fill in the gaps with information and expertise on stories they have identified themselves. We have a terrific rolodex of sources in the US and in Palestine, women and men who are experts in their fields, whose voices have not often been heard through US media.

We’d also like to be contacted by potential donors, people who care deeply that the Palestinian story is told, in an authentic voice, and who help us make that possible through their financial support.

We’d also like to be contacted by people who are excellent writers, care and know about Palestine and are computer savvy.