We’ve given lectures as part of the diversity management course of the Israeli Forum for Employment Diversity for several years. In the course, we present the JICC’s activities in cultural competency, and present relevant tools. The current course opened in January 2021, and includes 18 participants from leading organizations and companies in Israel, including the Israel Police, Strauss, Weizmann Institute, the electric company, Elbit, a large legal office, and more.
This year, because of Covid, the course is taking place via Zoom. The first meeting (of the two we were invited to) took place on February 10 and was led by Dr. Rachely Ashwal and Orna Shani Golan, who are leading the Cultural Competency Desk at the JICC. We presented tools to help organizations improve their ability to include everyone, not through broad organizational activities, but through personal skills that each diversity manager should have: tools for effective work in the face of generalizations, and tools to deepen inter-cultural dialogue.
The meeting ended with a simulation in which a manager had to address an employee’s request to take vacation on the Novi God holiday, after the organization had decided not to give vacations. The simulation engaged all in understanding the unique cultural aspects of this request. In the next meeting we’ll play the HoliGame, a unique tool we developed together with the Israeli Forum for Employment Diversity to deal with social and political tensions in an organization.
Read more about it here:
jicc.org.il/israeli-forum-for-employment-diversity/ ... See MoreSee Less
It’s no secret that Cultural Competence affects all areas of life – from healthcare, to welfare to businesses and academia. We’ve written before about our work with academic institutions.
Throughout Covid academic institutions have continued to hold class, online. And like many aspects of our everyday lives, post-secondary studies, as well as the online format, raise numerous inter-cultural and inter-identity issues, which cultural competence can help to address effectively. This year, we’ve been working with the Zefat Academic College, the Sapir Academic College in Ashkelon, Shenkar College – Engineering. Design. Art and Bar-Ilan University.
In February we led an online workshop for 20 participants, which dealt with issues such as culturally competent academic teaching, dealing with bias and stereotypes, cultural axes, adaptations that are necessary for different identities, and more.
In March we began a four-workshop series at Shenkar, and we’re scheduled to play the HoliGame in April with faculty and staff from Bar-Ilan University.
Read more about it here:
And this trend will hopefully continue in the next months and years! The message of cultural competence in academics will spread to more campuses! ... See MoreSee Less
We’ve been on the front lines helping to fight the spread of Covid in East Jerusalem for the past year, the first NGO ever invited to join a public command center that was set up together with the Jerusalem Municipality, the Ministry of Health, and the IDF’s Home Front Command, among others. At the same time, we actively set up and coordinated a Forum to Fight Covid in East Jerusalem, network of 150 Arab Palestinian civil society actors in East Jerusalem, representing some 80 organizations.
As a result of this work, an idea was raised to create a go-to web site that included all the possible information about Covid – healthcare information, where to go for testing, information vaccinations, information to counter fake news, and more.
This web site draws from official sources and authorities to ensure accuracy of information. Also critically important – the web site is considered an independent initiative. Official Israeli channels are often regarded with suspicion in East Jerusalem, so the fact that it is independent adds to the website’s legitimacy.
You can view the website here: qudscorona.com/
Read more about it here:
Many thanks to The Jerusalem Foundation, the Russell Berrie Foundation, and the Leichtag Foundation for their emergency support of our efforts to stop the spread of Covid in East Jerusalem. ... See MoreSee Less
For the past several years the Hadassah – Hebrew University School of Medicine (located at Hadassah Hospital at Ein Kerem) operates a course called “Man and Medicine,” which seeks to give medical students tools and awareness about the meeting with the person behind the sickness, and to help the future doctor look not at the sickness to be treated, but at the person as well. Members of the JICC’s Cultural Competency desk have been lecturing in the course almost since its beginning. We lectured, operated simulations and played movies to help impart the principles of cultural competence. After a few years, the course structure was changed, and we trained the course instructors how to use our training videos and teach the principles themselves.
On March 10, 2021, an orientation meeting was held for 30 course teachers (each one works with 12 – 13 students), most of them senior physicians at Hadassah Hospital. We were asked to give them tools to guide the students they mentor. This included: reviewing cultural competency and its principles, reminding how to use the training videos, as well as tips of how to do this via Zoom, since most of the course is currently being held remotely. The training was led by Orna Shani Golan, Director of the JICC’s Cultural Competency Desk.
The two-hour training included how to deal with generalizations about different groups, such as: “Muslim women don’t get epidural shots,” or “Ethiopians don’t look you in the eyes,” or “Vegans are anti-vaxxers,” and more. The participants discussed the communication gaps that arise when there are cultural gaps. Overall, they understood how to teach their students how to have an inter-cultural dialogue understanding the patients’ point of view from a cultural standpoint.
Read more here:
Many thanks to The Jerusalem Foundation for its support of cultural competency in Jerusalem since its inception, and to the Hebrew University Faculty of Medicine – Hadassah Medical Center, for their long-time partnership. ... See MoreSee Less
One of the side products of lockdown is having the opportunity to summarize knowledge gained from unique processes, and being able to compile it all in one place. Such is the case with the Parents Association Handbook, which was recently finished by our East Jerusalem Desk Director, Ezadeen El-Saad, who has been working with Parents Associations in East Jerusalem for the past 5 years.
Ezadeen has been working closely with several Parents Associations, especially in Sur Baher, Silwan and Ras el-Amud, among others. (You can read a little bit about it here.) The book describes all the processes they went through, from start to finish.
Read more about it on our blog:
There’s also a page that thanks the Leichtag Foundation and to The Jerusalem Foundation who have supported of the Parents Association project. Many thanks!
And many thanks to Ezadeen! May we have much more success with the Parents Association project! ... See MoreSee Less
For the past three years our Multicultural Activism Desk has been helping the Nefashot initiative to produce the Making Souls Festival at the end of November.
Making Souls focuses on activism for mental health issues and tolerance toward issues relating to mental health. This year, the Making Souls Festival took place between November 29 – December 5, after we’ve been mentoring the group and the events since June. This year, even during – or maybe because of? – the Covid pandemic, there were 40 (!) events (80 events applied to take part, but only 40 were accepted), when in previous years there were between 20 – 30.
You can read more about it here:
And, of course, many thanks to The Jerusalem Foundation , the Natan Fund and the U.S. Embassy Jerusalem for helping us to advance tolerance and cross-cultural activism in Jerusalem. ... See MoreSee Less
We’ve brought before news of her accomplishments in advancing tolerance in Jerusalem many places, but Shalem College recently profiled our Tal Alafi, our Coordinator for Multicultural Activism.
Read more about it here:
Kol Hakavod Tal! Proud of our staff at the JICC. ... See MoreSee Less
Photos from Rachely Ashwal's post ... See MoreSee Less
Even in Lockdown, We Continue to Learn Arabic – JICC Arabic Classes Featured in Jerusalem Post Article!!
This year, Arabic classes were held as they have been over the past 15 years, but this year, they’re taking place online.
The year began on September 6, with 174 students studying in 15 groups over 5 levels, with a maximum of 12 students per group.
One of our students, Linda Gradstein, is also a veteran reporter in Israel and throughout the Middle East. She recently wrote about the surge in Arabic study for the Jerusalem Report, which was published on the Jerusalem Post web site. You can read the entire article here:
And you can read more about it on out blog post:
Many thanks to The Jerusalem Foundation for its support of the Language Center almost since its inception! ... See MoreSee Less