White House Hosts Hand in Hand Students!
On December 17th, President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama hosted Inbar Vardi and Mouran Ibrahim, two 9th grade Hand in Hand students, to light a menora made by Hand in Hand students at the White House Hannuka celebration.
President Obama said: "Inbar and Mouran and their fellow students teach us a critical lesson for this time in our history: The light of hope must outlast the fires of hate. That’s what the Hanukkah story teaches us. That’s what our young people can teach us -- that one act of faith can make a miracle. That love is stronger than hate. That peace can triumph over conflict. And during this Festival of Lights, let’s commit ourselves to making some small miracles ourselves and sharing them with the world."
Hand in Hand School Arson Attack
On the evening of November 29, the Max Rayne Hand in Hand Bilingual School in Jerusalem was attacked. Arsonists set fire to two first-grade classrooms and graffitied hateful statements against Arabs and co-existence on the school walls.
Parents, staff, students, municipal and other supporters worked together so that school could open the following day. Temporary classrooms were set up; teachers were prepared for the day’s discussions; parents were brought in for debriefing and community planning. Hand in Hand has received broad support from citizens and public figures in Israel and abroad.
We thank all of you who are joining us in our mission to create a shared society for Jews and Arabs in Israel. Our response is unwavering: we Jews and Arabs continue together - without hatred, without fear.
About Hand in Hand
Hand in Hand brings together thousands of Jews and Arabs in five schools and communities throughout Israel. In Jerusalem. In the Galilee. In Wadi Ara. In Jaffa. In Haifa. We are proving on a daily basis the viability of inclusion and equality for citizens of Israel.
Current events threaten to pull Jewish and Arab citizens of Israel apart. Fear, anger and violence are undermining shared living. But this is not the case at Hand in Hand. Our preschools, summer programs and community activity continue unabated in our five schools and communities. As we begin the 2014-15 school year, and as our network of bilingual schools and communities expands, so does our message to Israeli society: THERE IS ANOTHER WAY.