The recent emergence of dozens of grassroots community mediation and dialog centers across Israel represents a promising force for peace in their communities. The MBB Israel Project worked with leaders in community mediation in Israel and the US to share and disseminate successful programs and lessons learned through direct partnerships, conferences and publications.
Board Liaison: Steven Seeche
Project Team Leader: Karmit Bulman
Project Team: Efrat Almog, Yvette Benedek, Christine Eyal, Martha Harty, Mark Kleiman, Mariana Valency, and Rachel Wohl
Project Intern: Kristen Letich
Partners in Israel:
- The Mosaica Center for Consensual Conflict Resolution: Nurit Bachrach
- The Jerusalem Inter-Cultural Center (JICC): Hagai Agmon-Snir
- Gishurim: Orit Yulzary
The Israel Project worked to establish and nurture Learning Partnerships between community mediation and dialogue centers in Israel (Jerusalem, Rehovot, Haifa) and centers in the US (New York, Minneapolis, Maryland). These partnerships involved regular high-level conference calls and virtual meetings to share programs, policies, strategies, and curriculums. After getting to know one another’s work, the teams choose focus areas where they could help each other “up their games.” As the efforts progressed, visits, conferences, and online archives were envisioned to document results and enable access for other centers.
In addition to Learning Partnerships, the Israel Project team explored new collaborative partnerships, including with Palestinian communities, as well as ways to expand the use of restorative justice processes.
The Israel Project congratulates its initial partner, the Neve Shalom/Wahat al-Salam School for Peace, for winning the S.E.R Reconciliation Award. Their program for “Palestinian and Israeli Literature Teachers” won the 2014 German S.E.R. Foundation prize, for promoting long-term reconciliation. The school’s program is based on “Two People Write from Right to Left,” the anthology they developed, which led to further courses for high school teachers from Israel and Palestine. The Israel Project congratulates the School for Peace for having an impact on thousands of Jewish and Palestinian children in Israel and Palestine, helping to humanize the ‘other,’ and opening dialog on Jewish-Arab relations in the classroom.