Blessed with a rich cultural heritage and rooted in an ancestral narrative, both Israelis and Palestinians share a connection that runs as deep and wide as a wadi flows during the rainy season. Rooted in mutually beneficial opportunities for social and economic development, a healthy interdependency advances the cause of peace and fosters an environment for cooperation and collaboration.
Although the task appears daunting, we imagine peaceful cooperation between the Israelis and the Palestinians in the West Bank, inspired by the following heroic leaders:
Qadoura Mousa Qadoura
Governor, Jenin District Palestinian
Gilboa (Arab) Deputy Mayor
Mayor of Gilboa
We Aim To
- Eliminate prejudice and discrimination, reduce neighborhood tensions, combat community deterioration, and improve economic conditions and opportunities in Israel and in the West Bank.
- Seek creative solutions, which offer inspiration and renewed hope for a peaceful future between Israelis and Palestinians.
- Create opportunities for collaboration by identifying positive mutually beneficial interests that lead to enhanced understanding and the elimination of prejudice and discrimination.
- Provide grants and raise capital, advancing quality health care and access for the poor and underserved.
Improved healthcare protects our core assets: the family and the com- munities in which we live. Our aim is to increase healthcare capacity in the Jenin District and improve healthcare for the underserved, while reducing the reliance on Israeli medical facilities. At the same time, we believe that institutional, cross-border relationships between the West Bank and Israel serve to bridge the conflict. Collaborative relationships between healthcare professionals and institutions can foster mutual trust and respect.
Language Center Initiative
The International School of Languages is the name of an educational, cultural and social project operated in two centers – one in Jenin and the other in the Gilboa. The center will provide lessons in various languages given by exchange teachers. The center will ensure that residents of all ages will have the opportunity to learn Hebrew, Arabic, English, Spanish and French. These languages of dialogue can serve as bridges between cultures, preparing children and adults alike to reformulate their priorities and concepts of mutual understanding, cooperation and collaboration.
The Gilboa/Jenin relationship is just the beginning for our two coexistence initiatives. If successful, our goal is to model these initiatives throughout the West Bank and in Israel. The differences between Gilboa and Jenin are in some way stark, yet in many ways very similar. They each have beautiful rural areas rich with orchards and fertile farmland. Both have high unemployment and the need for new and improved community services. Both communities are deeply rooted to their land, with family histories and personal narratives that are cherished by them. There was a time when there were no borders between the West Bank and Israel; and then, communities were separated by lines drawn on maps. Today, the physical separation between Israelis and Palestinians in the West Bank is one of conflict. Generations of prejudice and hatred have grown to become part of daily life.
More than 25 years ago, Eid Saleem’s family and Qadoura Moussa’s families formed a friendship that lasted for several generations. Yet, neither knew of their interconnected histories until they met in Gilboa. Today their relationship and those of countless others can provide a life of coexistence, cooperation and collaboration. IPCEE believes that improving the lives of those less fortunate reduces conflict. Helping to foster individual and institutional relationships can hold a key to lasting peace.