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Dear Partners and Friends,
Three months ago, the Corona crisis broke out, causing major upheaval in the world, in Israel, and in Givat Haviva. We have had to change all of the organization's functioning and set a number of priorities: ensuring the organization’s continued existence and preventing a huge financial deficit; securing employees’ work place at Givat Haviva and maximizing their benefits; ensuring continuity of activities as far as possible, under the conditions; and, finally, doing our best under the difficult conditions to respond to the emerging reality and the need to strengthen Arab society in preventing the spread of the pandemic.
Today, three months later, as Israel gradually returns to a new routine, this period can be viewed with pride for meeting all our goals: economically, we lost 25% of our sources of activity. Through furloughs and pay cuts that we did in the organization we were able to stabilize the budget and avoid a crippling deficit, all of our many employees went on furlough (quite a few have returned in recent weeks) but the organization continues to pay for the social benefits. Those who remain have worked harder at lower wages, as executives took a 20% pay cut and employees 10%. Not one employee was fired. Our fundraising teams in Israel and around the world have worked extensively to secure support and donations, and have run an emergency campaign to support us.
Most important: the organization's activities and mission were not affected. Givat Haviva International School (GHIS) continued operating throughout the period, maintaining both the students’ health and their academic achievements. The school's first class completed its curriculum this month with grades above the global International Baccalaureate network average. The dedicated team worked around the clock, adapting to the frequently changing guidelines, providing teaching for students both in the schools and those scattered around the world. Hebrew Enrichment Program has adapted to online teaching and the teachers have continued to impart spoken Hebrew to the middle school students across Israel. The Bara’em Hi-Tech Flower Program switched to online instruction and has continued uninterrupted. Two regional programs in our partnerships and communities continued: The Jewish-Arab Business Forum launched a pilot development activity, and a public engagement program in the Arab authorities started working in four municipalities. Givat Haviva’s new book, Partnership Among Arab and Jewish Communities for the Construction of Shared Society: Givat Haviva Model, presenting the lessons learned from Givat Haviva’s Shared Communities program, was presented at a virtual international conference. At the Arabic Studies Institute, the on-campus were discontinued, but the external courses went online and operated throughout Israel. The Institute is currently back in activity and enrollment in the on-campus summer courses is in full swing. The Collaborative Art Center was closed due to the restrictions in mid-March but returned to full activity about three weeks ago when the updated guidelines allowed it. Two programs for students and teachers via the Art Center (Through Others’ Eyes and Seeing Anew) have been adapted to virtual space and are fully operational. Most of the educational programs that work in tandem with schools in both co-education and informal education in Arab society have been halted and we are preparing to resume their activities at the start of the new school year. The Heart to Heart Program continued working during the period with the graduates of the program. Finally, with partners from the Ebert Foundation and the United States Embassy, Givat Haviva initiated and led two Social Media Campaigns: first, an Arabic language campaign on the importance of social distancing for Arab society during the Corona crisis, and a second emphasizing the Jewish-Arab partnership among the medical teams who fought the virus.
This prolific activity was made possible by the Givat Haviva program leaders’ ability to improvise, adapt and organize. I would like to thank everyone and await the return of all our employees and programs.
Be strong and of good courage,
Yaniv Sagee,
Givat Haviva Executive Director
Special Campaigns

Social Distancing Campaign for Arab society
During March, April, and May, we launched two video campaigns in partnership with the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, the Alam Association, and the United States Embassy and with the support of Friends of Givat Haviva in France. The first aimed to address the situation where it was evident that, in Arab society at the beginning of the Corona crisis, explanations about the need for social distancing were not reaching Arab communities and precautions were not observed. Given that the official public information in Arabic was lacking and both information and testing arrived in the Arab society relatively late to the Jewish society, there was a burning need for explanations in the Arabic language. The videos and posts used animation to show common social situations in Arab society and recommended how to adopt safe social behaviors. Special emphasis was placed on recommended precautions during Ramadan.
The second campaign showcases the work of the diverse medical teams involved in the intense efforts to contain the virus and attend to those infected. We recognized that the challenge presented by the coronavirus is an opportunity to strengthen the message of shared society, so we spoke with Jewish and Arab medical professionals doing life-saving work, working together during long shifts to help patients regardless of religion and origin. The participants' comments highlight the values of the shared society and their desire to see the solidarity that characterizes the medical teams spread to the entire society.

On April 22, we held an international conference celebrating publication of the book “Partnership among Arab and Jewish Communities for the Construction of Shared Society: Givat Haviva Model .” The conference, titled Co-constructing Shared Society between Jewish and Arab Communities in Israel: Possibilities and Challenges was supposed to take place at the University of Haifa, sponsored by the International Peace and Conflict Studies Program at the University of Haifa, the Ebert Foundation, and Givat Haviva, but the pandemic necessitated a move to a virtual platform.
The conference was attended by over 150 participants. Leading academics from Israel and around the world took part in an academic panel, and senior representatives from civil society engaged in building a shared society in Israel formed a roundtable. Author of the book and Givat Haviva academic advisor, Dr. Ran Kuttner, gave the keynote lecture, and Givat Haviva Executive Director, Yaniv Sagee, facilitated a concluding discussion to wrap up the conference. Participants were unanimous in asserting that this book represents a leap forward in the organization of knowledge and in development of theory and practice of building a shared society. Mari Fitzduff, Professor Emerita and founder of the Coexistence Program at Brandeis University (USA), who lectured at the conference, said: "Those of us who are looking for inspiration on how to create equal and partnered companies will do right if they read this book. In the midst of one of the world's most troubled conflicts, Givat Haviva envisions the ‘why’ and ‘how’, the challenges, strategies, and commitment required to create a shared society between Jews and Arabs in Israel ... given that our inability to build shared societies is really at the root of the existence of Today's wars, this book should be an inspiration to others facing such challenges elsewhere in the world."
Links to the book and all of the conference speakers and panels can be found <here> 
Business Forum
Over the past two months the Jewish-Arab Regional Business Forum has been very active, focusing on several areas:
  • Development of a business aid program for Arab society during the Corona crisis. A team of the Forum began locating businesses and building mentoring programs.
  • Building collaborations with other relevant bodies involved in the development and research of business promotion and support in Arab society.
  • A meeting was held with a number of leading women in business in Arab society in order to expand the forum for promoting commercial, social, and political advancement of Arab business-women.
  • The Forum's landing page (in Hebrew and Arabic only) offering assistance to businesses in the region has just been posted, and can be viewed here
Returning to a routine post-Corona gives us at GHIS a chance to recap the last three months, a period of countless difficult and challenging situations, coping with lack of information, guidelines that split the school and sent Israeli students back to their homes for distance learning while international students stayed on campus for frontal learning, intensive studying to complete and submit senior projects, preventative isolation to keep students and staff healthy, and more
But along with all the challenges and coping, this period has summoned unparalleled growth and learning. The graduates successfully completed their diploma and embarked on their independent and mature lives, new and unexpected friendships developed, the GHIS community has grown stronger and closer despite the physical remoteness and dispersal across the different continents, and we have been given the opportunity to acknowledge and appreciate our right to be healthy, protected, and part of a cohesive and supportive community
We wish our graduates success in their new endeavors and hope to meet and celebrate with them soon without restrictions and social remoteness. For the 11th grade students who become next year’s seniors, we wish them all the best for the end of the current school year, and enjoyment and rest during the summer holidays
GHIS is currently seeking applications for the 2020-2021 school year from eleventh graders around the world who aspire to become world leaders in creating just and shared societies! More information here
Public Engagement
Givat Haviva has been facilitating public engagement processes in five Arab municipalities: Araba, Sakhnin, Umm al-Fahm, Kafr Qasim and Kafr Qara. This project aims both to create effective, transparent processes of public engagement in service of strengthening participatory democracy and empowerment and to build capacity of the municipalities to conduct continuous public engagement processes to inform local decisions. Before and during the Corona crisis, we continued to meet with the mayors and councils to explain the plan, its objectives, and methods. The heads of the authorities gave the program their blessing and steering committee chairs were designated from the senior municipal leadership. Discussions with the steering committee heads will be followed by a process of selecting committee members in each locality. After this we will accompany them through a training and implementation process, during which each committee will choose a topic for their public engagement and carry it out.
Hebrew Language Enrichment
In March, with the spread of the coronavirus in Israel, the Ministry of Education decided to close down all the schools in the country. Our instructors, however, continued teaching their students with great dedication, through various methods of remote teaching such as Zoom, online games, and more. Through numerous ups and downs and frequent changes in directives from both the government and the unions, they kept the program going. We supported the teachers, providing training and assistance in use of online platforms and sharing content adapted to that medium. As of May 18, all teachers returned to frontal instruction in schools across the country
In the pictures are screenshots from remote lessons and training.
Bara’em Hi-Tech provides talented Arab high school students with an academic training toward a bachelor's degree in computer science. It meets the Arab student's need to for a supportive environment to learn and integrate into the high-tech market and is considered one of the most successful in its field.
This school year, which began in October, the fifth in the program, includes about 160 students in all of the classes.
Upon completion of the first semester, all of our first-year students passed the course "Introduction to Object Oriented Programming" successfully, setting an impressive precedent. The corona restrictions came into effect between semesters, and the second semester opened virtually after a short delay. Despite some difficulties adjusting to virtual instruction, the students are doing well, with support from the program coordinator, learning and submitting their assignments.

The Institute for Arabic Studies’ external spoken Arabic courses continued online during this time, and in a new, strategic partnership, eleven new courses for parents and staff of the Hand-in-Hand Bilingual Schools are underway. Here, the use of online platforms was an advantage, enabling the creation of homogenous classes with students from all over the country for fun and effective instruction. Altogether, twenty-one online Arabic courses continued during the shutdown. Activity began returning to the campus June 1, within the limitations of the corona restrictions. Enrollment is underway for summer classes, which we expect will also be able to take place on campus.

Art and Culture
The Givat Haviva Peace Gallery has a new English Facebook page: Https://
This period has been and still is very challenging in all respects, with the restrictions on gathering physically and the reduced staff in the Collaborative Art Center due to furloughs. Nevertheless, we were able to convert some of the programs to online formats, and continued to run them successfully:
The Through Others’ Eyes Program for Arab and Jewish eleventh graders, using photography as a means to get to know each other and explore issues of identity, culture, and shared society together, continued online. During this period, issues the group considered were the Holocaust, collective trauma, Independence Day and the Nakba, and the global covid-19 crisis, all through photography of course. A photo diary entitled Shared Corona Days was created online. Possibilities are being explored for a summer program in Israel, instead of the usual summer camp experience in the USA. Participants are also working toward the exhibition, which will open at the Givat Haviva Peace Gallery at the end of the summer and recruiting next year’s students.
The Peace Gallery extended the exhibition Simple to Abstract featuring Dani Karavan and Atar Geva, following a small opening March 14, the day before everything closed down. The gallery reopened May 18. Three tours for groups and families and Saturday activities for children inspired by the exhibition were held by reservation and led by gap year volunteers. A cultural and art event is planned before it closes.
Watch a short film about the exhibition here
Seeing Anew
Our new shared photography program for Jewish and Arab teachers has just completed its first cycle, which began in person and concluded online, and we hope to expand next year.
'Talking Artists' 
10 artists spoke on video with reference to challenges presented by the current circumstances.
'Amno'er' – youth artists displayed their projects with reference to the Corona period
'Singing in the days of Corona' - because our ears need singing
 Art and Ceramics Courses have resumed ceramics and print studies under new health guidelines and a new schedule for the next six months.
💝Your donation helps make Shared Society in Israel a Reality. Thank You!
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