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.