On one of the recent Thursdays we had an interesting Inter-religious event in Jerusalem. We encouraged an inter-religious group to come to Zion Square in the night to speak with people over there. A while ago, this could not happen without provocations. But after the almost three years of work in Zion Square - it was just great!
Last Thursday was a special day in the world of inter-religious activities and working toward tolerance in Jerusalem. It started off with a great group of Jews, Christians and Muslims, Praying Together in Jerusalem, who get together monthly for interfaith prayer. This month, after their inspiring pr...
On Thursday, March 23, MiniActive again celebrated its volunteers. This time, they took them on a special picnic to the Canada Park, about 45 minutes outside of Jerusalem. A year ago they celebrated the Family/Mother/Women day with their families in Jerusalem.
The 120 women were honored by the presence of writer Nuzha Abu Ghosh who told then some of the historical events in the history of the village of Emmaus. Then they toured the area, its ancient and more modern ruins, and held a scrumptious picnic lunch.
Many thanks to the MiniActive volunteers for their hard work and persistence throughout the year.
On Thursday, March 23, MiniActive again celebrated its volunteers. This time, they took them on a special picnic to the Canada Park, about 45 minutes outside of Jerusalem. A year ago they celebrated the Family/Mother/Women day with their families in Jerusalem) How do you get 120 people to smile all...
It's not nice to wake up during the Passover holiday to ugly graffiti. Especially if it's racist graffiti that says, "“Arabs, go home,” and “We want revenge.”
Fortunately, a group of tolerance activists were quick to act. They called the Municipal hotline, and within a few hours the graffiti was cleaned. But they didn't stop there. They replaced the graffiti with other signs, full of love and acceptance, saying "We love our neighbors".
The incident was even reported in both the English and Hebrew YNET web sites, which are associated with the most widely read national daily newspaper, Yediot Acharonot.
We were doubly interested in this process, since we've been helping residents and activists along the Railway Park initiate community-building activities along the park almost since its opening. Coupled with this cooperative work to promote tolerance, we're pretty proud of this network of activists, which acted quickly, independently, and effectively, with our support and encouragement.
Indeed, the tolerance activists of Jerusalem managed to make lemonade out of lemons. They demonstrated that Jerusalem has an efficient and sustainable network of tolerance!
Jerusalem has certainly seen its share of conflict – between Israelis and Palestinians, Jews and Arabs, Ultra-Orthodox Jews and Secular Jews, and even conflicts between different Christian denominations. And sometimes, Jerusalem also leads efforts to resolve those conflicts, on many levels. Thus is the rationale behind the Prayer for Church Unity that took place on January 26, 2017 on Mount Zion.
In 1964, Pope Paul VI made his first papal visit to the Middle East since the Middle Ages. In January 1964 he conducted an historic meeting with the Orthodox Patriarch of Constantinople, the first such meeting in 900 years! Since then, Christians around the world hold joint prayer services during the last week of January. In Jerusalem, this includes a special prayer, recited in the Cenacle (Room of the Last Supper), which is formally a neutral place, historically and religiously significant, and a sacred site to almost all the Christian communities in the city.
This year, for the second year running the prayer for church unity again ran smoothly, thanks to the volunteers of Window to Mount Zion (חלון להר ציון, www.mountzion.org.il/) and their close cooperation with the David Precinct of the Israel Police. Together, clad in their bright yellow vests, Window to Mount Zion volunteers were there to advance tolerance and ensure that all 200 worshipers, members of all different denominations, were able to peacefully take part in the prayer.
Worshipers prayed in one of the holiest places in Jerusalem, and we were proud to be part of this effort to build bridges between different groups. Congratulations to Window to Mount Zion volunteers on another job well done!
Jerusalem has certainly seen its share of conflict - between Israelis and Palestinians, Jews and Arabs, Ultra-Orthodox Jews and Secular Jews, and even conflicts between different Christian denominations. And sometimes, Jerusalem also leads efforts to resolve those conflicts, on many levels. Thus is…
Over the last few months we’ve mentioned about the steady increase in the number of ‘likes’ to the Atta’a Facebook page (today it’s more than 9,000) and in the traffic on the Atta’a web site (www.attaacenter.org/). The site has a wealth of information about health care and other service providers – from opening hours for the various offices to lists of hospitals and clinics with telephone numbers. There is information about the Ministry of the Interior, the National Insurance Institute, and much more.
In January the site, for the first time, published guidelines in plain and concise Arabic on who is eligible for discounts on property taxes and how to go about receiving those discounts. (Since health care, welfare, education and other services are provided based on a resident’s proof of residence in Jerusalem, nearly all East Jerusalem residents seek to pay annual municipal property taxes.)
The result was revolutionary – thousands of people (out of a total adult population of 150,000) clicked through to the information on the Atta’a website in two days! We are very proud of this number, and believe that it enabled a large number of people to work correctly to receive discounts on property tax.
Over the last few months we've mentioned here and here about the steady increase in the number of 'likes' to the Atta'a Facebook page (today it's nearly 8,500, but it changes frequently) and in the traffic on the Atta'a web site. The site has a wealth of information about health care and other servi...
Santé Israël (www.sante.org.il/) director, Marie Avigad, had held a meeting with about 30 French-speaking new immigrants, organized by the immigrant absorption officials at the Tel Aviv municipality. They asked questions about the different HMO’s, supplementary HMO coverage, and private insurance. They also asked what to do and to whom to turn during an emergency, how to reach a specialist, which forms different HMO’s need, how to understand what’s going on in a hospital, and more.
It was a pleasant surprise - 106 entrances to the Santé Israël French-language web site on Sunday, February 12, 2017. But why? And then it became obvious.... Presenting Santé Israël in Tel Aviv Santé Israël's director, Marie Avigad, had held a meeting with about 30 French-speaking new immigrants, or...
It seems to be the first extensive manual of cultural competence in community practice, including some novel community approaches that are specifically useful for diverse communities. The 150-page manual covers a wide range of the many aspects associated with cultural competency and community work. It discusses the principles from 5 different angles – focusing on the personal – individual worker, on the professional, on the organization, on the community, on the public sphere. And it offers suggested methods in how to work with people from different cultures.
We would like to thank the Israel Ministry of Welfare and Bruce (Baruch) Sugarman, the Director of the Community Work Service at the Ministry, for publishing this manual and hope that it will be helpful to workers and activists in many communities. Much of the practice in this guide is based on our work that s supported by The Jerusalem Foundation and UJA-Federation of New York, so they deserve thanks too!
We're proud to announce the publication of a new manual, Cultural Competence in Community Work, that was recently published under the auspices of the Israel Ministry of Welfare. Our director, Dr. Hagai Agmon-Snir and Dr. Orna Shemer co-authored the manual, which is available in Hebrew. You can downl...
MiniActive – and MiniActive Youth – never cease to amaze us. Now, it’s time for us to show them how much we appreciate them.So on February 19, the youth group had a tour of the Old City by walking the walls. Just fun!
MiniActive - and MiniActive Youth - never cease to amaze us. You can read here and here and here about their most recent accomplishments. Group picture on the walls Now, it's time for us to show them how much we appreciate them. Beautiful day for a beautiful walk Last week, on Sunday, February 19, t...
One of the best parts of our activities to promote tolerance in Jerusalem is seeing more and more collaborations to reach a common goal…
On February 23, Speaking in the Square teamed with the Yerushalmim Movement and the the Jewish Week of Constructive Conflict, which is operated by the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies together with Mosaica: The Center for Conflict Resolution by Agreement. The event included discussion circles, which were moderated by a group of Haredim who lead cultural activities. The circle included some 60 secular, Haredi and everyone in between, discussing the hot topics of the day, such as Shabbat in Jerusalem, and more.
In January 2017 the National Insurance Institute began its "Savings for Every Child" program, intended to help close socio-economic gaps and benefit children throughout the country, regardless of cultural or ethnic group.
Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem are eligible for this program, like all other NII benefits, but few had chosen their means of signing up. (Only 10% had signed up, as opposed to 40-50% in other parts of the country, including Arab cities and villages.)
Attaa was (and still) supported by The Jerusalem Foundation in all its years (almost 10!). We are proud to host and mentor Attaa in the last year and a half. Attaa is definitely and emerging excellent center!
In January 2017 the National Insurance Institute began its Savings for Every Child program, intended to help close socio-economic gaps and benefit children throughout the country, regardless of cultural or ethnic group. Here is the formal information about it. Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem...