During fall 2011, OneVoice conducted three campus tours in the US to Washington D.C., Greater New York, Northern California. In addition, OneVoice facilitated regional youth leadership training seminars.
Abigail Gottlieb and William Salameh devoted much of the Northern California tour working to end polarization and disengagement within the Bay Area’s Jewish Community. Speaking at Temple Sinai in Oakland, Temple Beth El (with visitors from St. Andrew’s Church) in San Mateo, and Temples Kehilla and Netivot Shalom in Berkeley, William and Abigail shared their visions for a better future and their personal motivations for working to end the conflict. In addition to their work building bridges between the fractured community, Abigail and William spoke at public events at Mills College, University of San Francisco, and San Francisco State University Law School where Professor Joshua Davis delivered moving introductory remarks. Visiting two Oakland High School classes, we were able to make connections between the Occupy activism in Oakland and OneVoice Youth Leaders’ activism.
Blog posts about the events:
Anas Ashqar and Gabi Avner, representatives of OneVoice Israel and OneVoice Palestine, respectively, traveled to the New York region for a 10 day trip featuring a diverse series of events hosted by universities, high school youth groups, think tanks and religious institutions. We kicked off the tour co-hosting a networking event with Young Professionals in Foreign Policy which featured a keynote address delivered OneVoice CEO, Howard Sumka. Visiting five universities: Columbia, Rutgers, Queens College, Penn State and UPenn, the young activists shared their personal stories and reasons for their years of engagement as OneVoice activists. Inspired by their stories, an enthusiastic group of Penn State students decided to establish a OneVoice chapter on their own campus. In addition to universities, we visited the Simcha Seniors at Temple Oheb Shalom and met with two youth groups: the Arab American Association of New York and buildOn members at Banana Kelly High School in the Bronx. Tour highlights included a roundtable at the Council on Foreign Relations and a meeting with Israeli Deputy Speaker of the Knesset Shlomo Mollo. Gabi and Anas were also featured on a livestream video chat with Movements.org where they discussed the importance of social media in OneVoice’s activism.
Blog posts about the events:
During a period of immense political uncertainty surrounding the bid for Palestinian statehood in the United Nations, OneVoice Israel’s Eyal Shapira and OneVoice Palestine’s Obada Shtaya addressed policy makers, students, and civil society organizations throughout Washington, D.C. At the top of the week, Eyal and Obada were joined by OneVoice CEO, Howard Sumka , and Ambassador Phil Wilcox of the Foundation for Middle East Peace for a C-Span covered Capitol Hill briefing. The momentum of this kick-off carried Eyal and Obada to engage D.C.-based students at Georgetown University, American University, George Washington University, University of the District of Columbia Law School, and Gallaudet University. In addition to meeting with students, Eyal and Obada had the opportunity to have important conversations with policymakers about their experiences and current political events with senior White House officials and staff of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and U.S. Department of State, as well as with young professionals from diverse organizations at the Buxton Initiative and Churches for Middle East Peace.
Blog posts about the tour: