Hands of Peace is a local non-profit whose mission is to empower young Israeli, Palestinian and Americans to raise their voices as leaders of change. Temple Solel has been a partner since the launch of the San Diego program in 2014. Worldwide, Hands of Peace now has more than 600 alumni living and working for peace across the United States and throughout Israel and the Palestinian West Bank. Two Middle East alumni will be in San Diego for the “Seasons of HOPE” (https://handsofpeace.org/2019-san-diego-benefit/) benefit on March 10, 2019 and will be joining us during our Shabbat Service to share how Hands of Peace has impacted the trajectory of their lives and the impact they have on their communities. Please join us and meet these inspiring alumni!
Mohammed Atira is an engineering graduate from An-Najah National University in Nablus. He participated in Hands of Peace in 2011 and again in 2012 as an XL. In 2017 Mohammed returned to Chicago as the Palestinian chaperone to spread the knowledge and the experience that he gained during his Hands of Peace years to the next generation. Mohammed believes that being a chaperone for Hands of Peace is his way of “paying it forward.” He may not “change the world, but to make a difference for the next generation to come is a start.”
Maor Yehiel started his journey with Hands of Peace 12 years ago in Chicago, as a 2006 participant, and has continued his engagement throughout the years. In 2018 he returned to Chicago as a chaperone during the Summer Program. Participating in Hands of Peace seminars and summer programs reenergizes Maor and reminds him to focus on what is really important – the situation that surrounds him in Israel/Palestine. He believes that “you cannot be an Israeli or a Palestinian without living the situation, whether you are involved or not involved. Once you know, you cannot ignore.”