Peace is not a zero-sum equation. Those who seek an end to this conflict must find a way to support the legitimate concerns of Israelis and Palestinians alike, and the desire of those on both sides who want nothing more than for their children to know a future of peace and coexistence.
Thankfully, there are countless Israelis and Palestinians working together every day to lay the groundwork for peace. Canadians of all backgrounds have an opportunity to support innovative, grassroots programs in the region that help build trust between Israelis and Palestinians, educate children from both communities to engage and accept one another, foster Jewish-Arab economic cooperation, and create healthcare partnerships between Israeli and Palestinian doctors – among other life-changing initiatives.
We are happy to share a sampling of NGOs involved in peacebuilding and coexistence. While we are encouraged by their important work, we are not endorsing any NGO listed here.
Hand in Hand is building inclusion and equality between Arab and Jewish citizens of Israel through a growing network of bilingual, integrated schools and communities. Launched in 1997 with 50 children, there are now over 2,000 students enrolled in seven Hand in Hand schools from Jerusalem to the Galilee. Hand in Hand was established to combat one of Israel’s greatest existential threats: the growing social alienation and lack of trust between Jewish and Arab citizens of Israel. We believe that education is key in changing this.
Hand in Hand schools are public schools, recognized and overseen by the Israeli Ministry of Education, and open to all parts of the Arab and Jewish populations in Israel. This government funding is partnered with philanthropy and parents fees, which enable our specialized bilingual, multicultural curriculum and community activities.
Our trailblazing path of shared education and living is fostering a new generation of Arabs and Jews who are equipped to live together in cooperation and respect. The curricula in Hand in Hand schools are based on the values that reflect both cultures and languages, oriented in multiculturalism and shared and equal citizenship. In our bilingual educational model, Hebrew and Arabic have equal status, as do both cultures and national narratives.
In the 2021-22 school year, our network includes seven schools and communities: Jerusalem, the Galilee, Wadi Ara, Tel Aviv-Jaffa, Haifa, Kfar Saba, and Kafr Qasim, serving over 2,000 students. There are 3,000 active adult community members, who impact over 10,000 Jewish and Arab citizens. And we are growing. With over 1,200 students on waiting lists this year, and groups of parents in new locations asking for new schools, Hand in Hand proves that shared living is possible, it is real, and it is happening throughout Israel right now.
In diverse communities across the region, Israeli and Palestinian boys and girls take part in a unique, in-depth peace education through sport program. Through "twinning" Jewish and Arab as well as Israeli and Palestinian communities together, these youths play in mixed groups as one team, with their coaches undergo extensive training in the unique educational methodologies developed by the Peres Center.
At the end of each activity year, all participants meet for the Mini Mondial - a "World Cup" themed tournament - and together with ambassadors from around the world, local mayors, and Israeli Premier League players, enjoy a full day of sports, FairPlay, and peacebuilding.
We mend hearts regardless of race, religion, gender, nationality or financial status.
Save a Child’s Heart saves the lives of critically ill children suffering from heart disease in countries where access to pediatric heart care is limited or nonexistent. Through bringing children to Israel for medical care, performing missions abroad, and training medical personnel, we are bringing hope to families, communities, and countries. As Israel’s preeminent humanitarian organization, we are transforming pediatric cardiac care around the world.
Tsofen is a non-profit organization, founded in 2008 by Jewish and Arab hi-tech professionals and economists who aspired to develop the hi-tech sector in the Arab community as an economic lever and catalyst for shared society in Israel. In 2016, Tsofen won the Speaker of the Israeli Parliament’s Prize for Promoting Mutual Understanding between Jews and Arabs. Tsofen operates in Nazareth and Kafr Qasim.
Tsofen is rooted simultaneously in the heart of the Arab community and Israel’s hi-tech industry. We bridge stakeholders from Arab municipalities, Arab students and graduates, the Israeli government, and the hi-tech industry, to 1) promote the establishment of hi-tech hubs in Arab towns and 2) integrate thousands of Arab engineers into hi-tech firms.
Founded in Jerusalem in 2002, Kids4Peace is a global movement of Jewish, Christian & Muslim youth, dedicated to ending conflict and inspiring hope in divided societies around the world.
Through a network of local chapters, Kids4Peace operates five international summer camps and a six-year, year-round program for hundreds of Palestinian, Israeli and North American youth.
We are trying to change the conversation — to bring new questions, and new answers to the struggle for peace, ones that are based in real relationships of trust and understanding.
The Arab-Jewish Community Center was founded in 1993 in partnership with the Tel Aviv-Jaffa Municipality as a non-profit, public institution. We work to increase intercultural cooperation, tolerance and trust between Arabs and Jews through integrated peace education and programming; and empower the members of our local community to reach their full potential in contributing to the voice of civil society through social welfare programs and educational activities.
TEC Center for Technology, Education, and Cultural Diversity was founded in 2005 by the heads of ICT: at Kibbutzim College of Education – Dr. Miri Shonfeld, at Talpiot College of Education – Dr. Elaine Hoter and Dr. Asmaa N. Ganayem at Al-Qasemi Academic College of Education, with the support of the heads of the colleges at the time, Dr. Yossi Assaf, Mr. Binyamin Bahagon, and Dr. Mohammed Issawi. To date, about 5,000 student teachers, 1000 teachers, and 20,000 pupils have participated in TEC Center programs.
The TEC model, developed by the three founders, offers an opportunity for students at different colleges and from different cultures to learn together via the Internet, using synchronous and asynchronous tools in mixed multicultural groups to create learning and teaching materials, and experience advanced teaching environments, which gradually build trust between the group members.
The Goal of our movement is to bring about the resolution of the Israeli Palestinian conflict by means of an honorable, non-violent and mutually acceptable agreement, with the participation of women from diverse groups of the population in Israel, in accordance with UN Resolution 1325.
The movement is not affiliated with any political party and its members include women from diverse communities within Israeli society: right, center and left; religious and secular; Jews, Arabs, Druze and Bedouin; young women and older women; women from the center of the country and from the periphery. The movement does not support any one particular solution to the conflict.
The movement is composed of thousands of volunteers, organized within a framework of both regional teams, as well as professional teams.
Mosaica seeks to cultivate a culture of conflict resolution, dialogue and consensus building among individuals, families, communities, cultures and religions through developing, implementing and disseminating models of third-party intervention. The organization was founded by Rabbi Michael Melchior, currently Mosaica’s chairman and president, in collaboration with Professor Aviad Hacohen and the late Professor Elie Wiesel.
The Foundation was established in 1966 by the legendary Mayor of Jerusalem, Teddy Kollek. Over the last five decades, the Jerusalem Foundation has brought together friends from around the world to invest more than $1.5 billion dollars in projects throughout the city. Through over 4000 initiatives, both capital and long-running programs, the Foundation has touched the lives of all of Jerusalem’s more than 900,000 residents, in all spheres of life and in all the city’s communities.
Today, the Jerusalem Foundation’s original mandate is more relevant than ever. The Jerusalem Foundation has created a model for cross-cultural and cross-communal engagement among all of the population groups in the city.