Thanks to you, our very own dedicated community of supporters,
Givat Haviva has reached over
Israeli Arab and Jewish community members with our holistic programming, taught
Arab middle school students practical Hebrew skills, facilitated encounters between more than
Jewish and Arab youth, given
of Arab Israeli students the opportunity to enter the hi-tech industry, and brought together
of people at our Annual Shared Society Conference to prove that unity, equality and freedom can be a living, thriving reality for all Israelis.
Your friends and family at Givat Haviva - the Center for Shared Society in Israel - are dedicated to capitalizing on our over sixty years of expertise and priceless resources to continue developing these programs, delivering results and exponentially expanding our impact.
It is a crucial time for Givat Haviva right now, with tensions high and inequality polarizing, our collective work and efforts to establish and promote a shared future and shared society in Israel are paramount.
But we cannot do this without you. We need your help to achieve these goals, to transform Israel into the State its citizens deserve.
A home where every person has full equality and freedom of social, political and economic opportunities. Where fear, anger and conflict are overcome by peace, understanding and a newfound unity.
We can achieve this together with your help!
We met two participants from our
Children Teaching Children
program, Or Levene and Ish Ashtiak, while in Israel for our Annual Shared Society Conference only a few weeks ago. Ish is a fifteen year old Arab Israeli girl and Or is a sixteen year old Jewish Israeli boy - both were eager to share their experiences and impressions with us.
Ish shared that she "joined the program because
I love peace and this beautiful work. I wanted to share my Palestinian culture with the Jewish Israelis and change their stereotypes of us." During our visit, her group was immersed in a global village activity, where Jewish and Arab youth work together to design their ideal village. Ish was "very surprised that the group quickly included both a temple and a mosque."
Or was eager to join the program because he "always had a feeling that Arabs were not so bad as the TV and radio describe. I wanted to prove to myself that this is true, that
the Arabs were good people just like me." Or found that the program's biggest impression on him was throughout discussions during the encounters where he found he could express himself honestly and deeply without fear of negative reactions.
Ish and Or's stories are not only a symbol of hope and the promise of success in our endeavor, but proof that real, authentic and impactful change can and is happening on a daily basis at Givat Haviva.
Ish and Or are just two of hundreds of Israeli youth involved in our collaborative educational programming called
Children Teaching Children.
The program pairs Jewish and Arab classrooms and engages them in essential learning designed for a shared society. This involves fostering mutual understanding and shared citizenship by tackling complex issues of national and individual identity, community life and conflicting narratives in a shared land. Once equipped with this shared society toolkit, Givat Haviva facilitates visits to each other's schools and our own campus so the classes can discuss together, participate in collective encounter activities, and form long-term bonds that will keep them connected throughout their entire educational lifecycle.
Children Teaching Children
program has been a veteran project of Givat Haviva's for a long time, and its impressive success in combating societal fears, stereotypes and prejudice have been well documented. In the past, Givat Haviva was awarded the
for Peace Education
for the program's longstanding success in promoting Jewish-Arab dialogue and reconciliation. More recently, this past month Tel Aviv University awarded Givat Haviva the
Dr. Chaim Constantiner Prize in Education
, highlighting the impressive track record of our educational programming.
Today, we are launching our annual summer campaign with your help. There is an urgent demand for additional schools to be incorporated into our
Children Teaching Children
platform. This past year Givat Haviva added a fourth pair of Arab and Jewish communities to our flagship
strategic framework. Zemer Arab Local Council and Emek Hefer Jewish Regional Council have officially joined Shared Communities, which pairs neighboring municipalities to establish structured, mutually beneficial cooperation between neighbors historically divided by increasing tensions and mutual alienation. There are four schools in Zemer and twenty schools in Emek Hefer waiting to be paired through the Children Teaching Children program.
Givat Haviva has jump-started this campaign with two generous contributions for two new pairs of schools. Help us achieve our goal to raise $55,000 for five additional pairs of schools for the shared communities region!
Once we reach this goal together, Givat Haviva will provide hundreds of Israeli Arab and Jewish youth with an opportunity to challenge preconceived fears and misunderstandings about "the other" and transform their relationship with identity, nation and their fellow citizens. This critical impact will have a ripple effect on the youth's families, communities and the entire region by extension.
The overwhelming need for this program cannot be overstated.
Givat Haviva is asking you - our community of dedicated supporters - to contribute to this summer's fundraising goals by donating through these suggested giving levels:
Givat Haviva reciprocates your commitment and support by pledging to relentlessly strive and advocate for Shared Society in Israel every single day.
Givat Haviva has been a shared space for peace, understanding and progress for over sixty years, and we will continue to develop and cultivate innovative programs and ideas that
promote and create an Israel where social justice, collaboration and equality are more than just a distant ideal but a living, thriving reality.
With hope and peace,
Linda Rubin, Director Omer Hakim, Israel Representative