We “Kickstart Peace” in France!

SAMSUNGOur Abu-Ghosh – Kiryat Yearim Kickstart Peace Soccer ball Team spent 6 days in France in the end of April following an Invitation received by French Students, who also hosted them in their houses and treated them as their own. The team attended several events with local youth and were met with warmness and hospitality by municipal officers in every city they visited.

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New season of Kickstart Peace

Kickstart Peace, a joint program of the ICCI, Abu Ghosh Community Center, and the Kiryat Yearim Youth Village, began its second season with many new participants joining returning members of the team. Made possible by a special grant from FAITH, the Foundation to Advance Interfaith Trust and Harmony, Kickstart Peace is a unique interreligious youth program in which Arab and Jewish teens from the Jerusalem area form a multicultural football team. Through this program, which combines sports training, matches as part of the local “Mayor’s League,” and intercultural and social activities, youth get to know each other through sports as they build social relationships, and develop tolerance and mutual understanding.

The first team of Kickstart Peace, June 2012

The first team of Kickstart Peace, June 2012

Fifteen Jewish and Arab teenage boys (aged 15-18; 11th and 12th graders) from the Arab village Abu Ghosh and the Jewish Kiryat Yearim Youth Village comprise this year’s team. The team is trained under the guidance of a Jewish coach from Kiryat Yearim and an Arab assistant-coach from Abu Ghosh. Additionally, ICCI provides two staff members, one Jewish and one Arab, to administer an educational program of intercultural enrichment and coexistence education activities. These two facilitators, ICCI alumnus Hani Salman and Danna Sharon, lead the team through team building activities, guided discussions, goal-oriented collaboration, and more. They will soon guide the team through a process of jointly designing a team logo for their football uniform.

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