American Friends of Neve Shalom/Wahat al-Salam

The American Friends of Neve Shalom/Wahat Al-Salam encourages, supports and publicizes the projects of Neve Shalom/Wahat al-Salam, the "Oasis of Peace." For more than thirty years, Neve Shalom/Wahat al-Salam has been dedicated to dialogue, cooperation and a genuine and durable peace between Arabs and Jews, Palestinians and Israelis. Jewish and Palestinian citizens of Israel have chosen to live and work together as equals in this community to promote trust, understanding and mutual respect.
Mar 15, 2011

Preparing the next Journey

The staff at the  Pluralistic Spiritual Center has been facing a tough fundraising season and has decided to conduct the next Massa-Massar Journey in cooperation with other organizations that pursue similar goals. Thank you for all of you who support this meaningful project!

They are now finishing the recruiting phase of the program and the coming months should see a couple preparation sessions, and then the Journey in May or June. It should then be followed by four more sessions between the participants. We'll keep you updated as progress happens. 

Links:

Feb 22, 2011

A look at the Zoo Lab

Getting acquainted with animals
Getting acquainted with animals

The Zoo Lab is an educational and therapeutic initiative designed to encourage students (pre-K through 6) to learn about, interact with, and care for some of the animal species who share our world, in the context of a comprehensive interdisciplinary environmental studies curriculum. It is one of the many extra-curricular programs run by the Primary School to enrich the children's learning experience. 

Last summer, Israel experienced record-breaking temperatures and this was very hard on the animals. Despite various experiments with ice and water, the Giant Rabbits (a special kind of rabbit) and chinchillas died. The children, on returning to school, were very sad about this. The birds managed all right, perhaps because some of these are warm weather varieties. Currently, there are cockatiels from Australia and doves from Africa. There are also parrots, guinea pigs. silkie chickens and ordinary rabbits.

All of the children in the school spend time with the animals for one class hour per week. The younger children mainly pet them and follow the progress of egg hatchings and births, etc. The older children take more responsibility. Among the tasks are gathering food, including kitchen waste, greens from nature and bought food (seeds and mixtures). They learn about how the animals protect themselves from parasites by eating herbs such as rosemary, and add these also to their food. Another responsibility is taking the waste from the floor of the zoo lab to use as compost in the plant nursery. All the children love the zoo lab, and some show a special penchant for taking responsibility there.

Taking care of birds
Taking care of birds
At the Zoo Lab
At the Zoo Lab

Links:

Jan 25, 2011

Two new youth encounters organized

Discussions continue between the formal workshops
Discussions continue between the formal workshops

In the past three months, the School for Peace has been able - thanks to supporters like you - to organize two new youth encounters. Each brings about 60 Jewish and Palestinian high school students together for three days of discussions and activities.

One was organized between Nazareth and Ayelet Yarden schools on October 30 - November 2. The other one was between Sakhnin and Tel Aviv Municipal Aleph schools on January 23 - 25. A third one is planned between the Reali and Acre's Terra Sancta schools from February 13 - 15. A lot of schools in the country have shown interest in participating in such youth encounters, but the School for Peace can only organize a handful each year due to lack of funding.

Encounters are organized in Neve Shalom/Wahat al-Salam, the only community in Israel where Jews and Palestinians choose to live, work and raise their children together as equals. This ensure a peaceful environment of mutual respect and cooperation. Hebrew and Arabic are equally used during the workshop, while the staff is also equally split between Jews and Arabs.

Links:

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