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The Abraham Initiatives is a leading non-partisan, non-profit Israeli organization working to advance a shared society of coexistence and equality among Israel’s Jewish and Arab citizens. It creates large-scale shared society models through a series of groundbreaking national initiatives that gives them the credibility to advocate for policy change and government reforms.

 

The Citizens' Accord Forum (CAF), founded by former Member of Knesset Michael Melchior, is one of the leading voices in Israel with the goal to create a shared society for its Jewish and Arab citizens. The CAF strives for a more democratic and pluralistic society, in which all citizens are equally treated by the government and authorities. CAF programs include community development and political advocacy on a local and governmental level.

 

The Deutsche Journalistenschule (DJS) is the most renowned journalism school in Germany. Since 1949, around 2,200 young people have been trained as editors. The graduates work successfully at newspapers and magazines, at radio and television stations, online editorial and press offices or as freelance journalists.

Previous Project: Exchange Program for Journalism Students in Germany and Israel

The objective of the project was to arrange for an academic exchange for 16 students of journalism from the DJS in Germany and 16 students from the Tel Aviv University in Israel. Its intention was to provide the students with insight into the complex relationships and backgrounds of the other society and to create joint media reports. The students chose mutually agreed upon topics: refugees, Veganism, Alternative Transportation, the Rights of Homosexuals, Beer Culture and a documentary about the student exchange itself. The objective was to provide the students with insight into how the societies deal with these issues as well as introducing the students to various journalistic approaches and positions regarding the matter. The result of the exchange program were video, audio and written articles, created in mixed teams of Germans and Israelis, which creatively reflected the content of the exchange, by interviewing local people and institutions in both countries. 

Tel Aviv University (TAU) is a public research university in Tel Aviv, Israel. With over 30,000 students, the University is the largest in the country. The University is the center of teaching and research of the city, comprising 9 faculties, 17 teaching hospitals, 18 performing arts centers, 27 schools, 106 departments, 340 research centers and 400 laboratories.

Previous Project: Exchange Program for Journalism Students in Germany and Israel

The objective of the project was to arrange for an academic exchange for 16 students of journalism from the Deutsche Journalistenschule in Germany and 16 students from TAU in Israel. Its intention was to provide the students with insight into the complex relationships and backgrounds of the other society and to create joint media reports. The students chose mutually agreed upon topics: refugees, Veganism, Alternative Transportation, the Rights of Homosexuals, Beer Culture and a documentary about the student exchange itself. The objective was to provide the students with insight into how the societies deal with these issues as well as introducing the students to various journalistic approaches and positions regarding the matter. The result of the exchange program were video, audio and written articles, created in mixed teams of Germans and Israelis, which creatively reflected the content of the exchange, by interviewing local people and institutions in both countries. 

EQA Logo

EQA Logo

EQA; EQA; EQA

Community Events in Palestinian Nature Reserves

The Palestinian Environment Quality Authority and HSF cooperated on a project for raising environmental awareness among the Palestinian society through implementing community events in the nature reserves. These events develop a sense of belonging and responsibility towards the nature reserves especially in C Areas and use the Mahmiyat.ps website as an environmental education tool. The project targets the Palestinian society from all over the West Bank including families, children, women and students. Different activities are implemented in the community events to portray the potential of the nature reserves for ecotourism such as birdwatching tours, flora and fauna identification, and cleaning campaigns.

Merchavim, the Institute for the Advancement of Shared Citizenship in Israel, is an Israeli nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting diversity, inclusion, and greater fairness in classrooms, communities, and society. Merchavim’s programs extend beyond the classroom, and include a program providing diversity training for organizations and a program for leadership in social cohesion.

I`lam- Arab Center for Media Freedom, Development and Research is a non-profit NGO based in Nazareth. Founded in 2000 by a group of Arab-Israeli journalists and academics, the main goal of I`lam is to contribute to a shared society, by promoting media rights among the Arab society in Israel. Media rights include impartiality and conformity with democratic values. Their project activities target journalists, civil society actors and media students active in the local Arab and Hebrew media landscape.

 

Mahmiyat.ps is the first web presence for the Palestinian nature reserves launched in 2016. The website was implemented by the Hanns Seidel Foundation with supervision of the Palestinian Environment Quality Authority. It aims at raising environmental awareness among the Palestinian Society about the nature reserves in the West bank and Gaza strip by providing information about the reserves and nearby historical and cultural sites as well as nearby services such as guesthouses and points of sale for local products. In addition, it provides simple and user-friendly databases of the Palestinian flora and fauna that made the website an online educational tool serving different sectors of the society. In 2018, the logo of Mahmiyat.ps was officially registered as a trademark in Palestine.

MOTA Logo

MOTA Logo

MOTA; MOTA; MOTA

Municipal Engagement in Promoting Ecotourism in the Nature Reserves

The Palestinian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities and HSF developed a project to mainstream ecotourism into the planning of the local Governments near the nature reserves. The aim is to contribute to the local economic development of the villages and to the nature reserve’s conservation goals. 

Shatil is leading social change in Israel, promoting a shared society based on social, economic and environmental justice, human and civil rights, and cultural and religious pluralism. Shatil’s work strengthens Israel’s democracy by increasing citizen involvement in the process of government and the quest for equality and social justice.

Ajja's goal, a village in the north of the Palestinian Authority, is to be the first ecovillage in the west bank. As the village already has three big solar energy projects they aim to develop a concept for an eco-village that will contain the elements of hiking, camping and environment educational center. This in order to enhance public environment awareness and Local Economic Development strategies based on organic farms, solar stations and natural and cultural heritage located in Ajja. Developing this concept would hopefully later change the way other municipalities manage rural areas, by designing and embracing environmental and sustainable development concepts and solutions. 

The University of Haifa was established in 1972, becoming Israel's fourth university. About 18,100 undergraduate and graduate students study in the university a wide variety of topics, specializing in social sciences, humanities, law and education. Beyond the objective of a first-rate higher education, the University of Haifa aims to provide equal educational opportunities to all, and in particular to encourage mutual understanding and cooperation between the Jewish and Arab populations on and off campus. The university is a home for students from all sectors of Israeli society - Jews, Muslims, Christians, Druze, religious and secular students.

Previous Project: the German-Israeli Textbook Commission

For the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Israel and Germany, the joint German-Israeli Textbook Commission published its findings. During their five-year research, the bilateral Textbook Commission analyzed and evaluated the presentation of each country in the fields of history, geography and social studies.
Out of the chosen Federal States, the Bavarian textbooks stood out positively in the way they presented Israel as part of a broader context instead of the common narrow context of the Israel-Palestinian conflict.

In addition to analyzing the textbooks, the Commission also gave recommendations. One of these recommendations was the establishment of bilateral teacher working groups, in order to develop supporting material for use in schools. The high-schools that we partnered with for this project were the Hebrew Reali School in Haifa and the Ignaz-Taschner-Gymnasium in Dachau. The academic head of the project was Dr. Arie Kizel, University of Haifa, who also served as the Israeli coordinator of the Textbook Commission.

Tel-Hai College is a leading public academic college in Israel and an engine of change for the educational, economic and social development of the Upper Galilee. The students of Tel Hai enjoy an innovative curriculum, diverse student life and pluralistic atmosphere alongside growing reputation for academic excellence. Hanns Seidel Foundation Jerusalem partners with Tel Hai in forming a coalition of academic staff, NGO's, activists and residents of the upper Galilee to address the lack of health services provided in the Northern periphery of Israel. The projects address the various population in the eastern Galilee, Jewish population in both urban Kiryat Shmona and surrounding villages and kibbutzim, a large Druze minority, significant Bedouin and Circassian minorities and a Christian-Arab community.

"0202 – Points of View from Jerusalem" address three major communities in Jerusalem: Palestinians of East Jerusalem, secular and religious Jews of West Jerusalem, and Haredi- Jews of West-Jerusalem. All three communities are separated by both visible and invisible barriers: different educational systems, political institutions, media, world views, and languages.

0202 - Points of View from Jerusalem’s assumption is that the fundamental differences between the communities can also be a source of prosperity, complexity, and depth. They aim to elevate discourse, to the place where even when we disagree; we are aware of the other’s point of view and acknowledge its legitimacy.

The Israel Museum is the largest cultural institution in the State of Israel and is ranked among the world’s leading art and archaeology museums. The Ruth Youth Wing for Art Education, unique in its size and scope of activities features exhibition galleries, art studios, classrooms, a library of illustrated children’s books, and a recycling room. Special programs foster intercultural understanding between Arab and Jewish students and reach out to the wide spectrum of Israel’s communities.

Incoming tourism has been paralyzed across the globe due to the spread of COVID-19. Naturally, this applies also to the Palestinian Authority. While at this point it is still difficult to predict the duration of this crisis or assess its implications, demand for domestic travel is rising as travelers look for close-to-home. The Arab Tour Guides Union (ATGU) is preparing the guides by organizing ecotourism capacity building workshops and courses. The Ecotourism Capacity Building for Guides project is aimed at increasing the skills of sustainable tourism professionals. It achieves this through theoretical and practical training on issues such as the environment, ecotourism, nature conservation, natural and cultural heritage, safety and destinations.

The goal of the Palestine Society for Environment and Sustainable Development is to raise environmental awareness through implementing community events in nature reserves. These events develop a sense of belonging and responsibility towards the nature reserves while using Mahmiyat.ps website as an environmental education tool. The project targets the Palestinian society from all over the West Bank including families, children, women and students. The different activities and community events portray the potential of the nature reserves for ecotourism such as birdwatching tours, flora and fauna identification, and cleaning campaigns.

The European Forum at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem is an important partner in our projects related to Israel-German relationship and its' academic aspects.

In the past we have conducted researches, opinion polls, academic events and distributed information regarding these issue.