Yaniv directs the Afula municipal cultural center and gallery, and is in charge of the day-to-day running of the facility which contains a large, modern auditorium forum for musical performances, repertory theater, children’s shows, professional conferences, and more. He is a member of a number of municipal steering committees, and is involved in municipal event planning and large-scale productions. He is also a member of the board of trustees of the Max Stern Yezreel Valley College, a reflection of his commitment to facilitating collaborations between Afula and the neighboring regional council. Yaniv holds a bachelor’s degree in communications and public policy from the Max Stern Yezreel Valley College, and a master’s degree in political science and political communications from Tel-Aviv University.
Avihay is a home room teacher at the Yad Sasson school on Kibbutz Lavi, where he also teaches a number of different subjects. His work is informed by a deep belief in educating and developing individuals as the key to a strong society. He holds a bachelor’s degree in education and a teaching diploma from the Herzog-Lifschitz College of Education. Avihay is married, and lives in Afula.
Eti directs the human resources division of the Afula municipality. In this capacity, she is responsible for managing and developing human resources, developing human capital, and managing organizational processes for the municipality. She is also a member of the board of directors of the Afula Economic Development Corporation. Eti holds a bachelor’s degree in multidisciplinary studies and social sciences from the Max Stern Yezreel Valley College, and a master’s degree in political science (with a specialization in public policy and administration) from the University of Haifa. Married and a mother of three, she lives on Kibbutz Mishmarot.
Rakefet is a social worker and qualified legal case assessor for the Afula municipality’s welfare division. She works with the family court system and the families involved in it. Rakefet has much experience of community and group work, as well as in employee guidance and mentoring, needs assessment and building work plans, budget management, and collaborating with community services. She also leads groups for women, youths, and refugees. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Haifa and a master’s degree from Tel-Aviv University, both in social work. She is married and a mother of four, and lives in Afula.
Itay is a placement consultant at the Israel Elwyn nonprofit, working to help place people with disabilities in employment as part of a collaborative project with the National Insurance Institute’s rehabilitation department. His vision is to reduce social gaps through accessibility and guidance initiatives in the labor market. Itay holds a bachelor’s degree in communications from Max Stern Yezreel Valley College. He is married and a father of two, and lives in Afula.
Adi is a home room teacher at the AMIT Yehuda religious high school for boys in Afula, and also serves as rabbi of the city’s Yemenite community. He was a partner in establishing the Afula religious gar’in [an ideological community of young adults working together in a municipal setting to promote social and communal issues], and helped run its community activities for the first five years. He is also a relationship counselor. Adi sees his role in Afula as a religious mission, providing spiritual and educational resources for the public in the city and the region which draw on the teachings of Rabbi Kook, and based on a willingness to partner and collaborate with any individual or group interested in helping Afula flourish. He holds a bachelor’s degree in teaching from Ohalo College, and a master’s degree in education system management and development from the Orot Israel Academic College in Elkana. He is married and a father of seven.
Shani coordinates the Teach for Israel (TFI) Ambassadors program in Haifa and the north, and also runs her own business in organizational development consulting and personal coaching. She is responsible for supporting teachers who graduated from the TFI program, as individuals and as a group, and for their personal and professional development. Her vision is to nurture teachers and leaders for change who will promote equal opportunities in Israeli education. Shani holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s degree in organizational consulting and development, both from the Max Stern Academic College of Emek Yezreel. She has a daughter, and lives in Afula.
Gershon works for the Society for the Advancement of Education as a consultant and mentor to educational mediators in the state education system’s northern district. He also acts as an educational mediator on behalf of the University of Haifa, and as a legal mediator on behalf of “Israel Mediation” and the justice system. Previously, he set up the Gur Aryeh Yehuda nonprofit which works to preserve and nurture the heritage and traditions of Ethiopian Jewry. Gershon also established a synagogue for the Ethiopian community, and helps organize social gatherings there for the community. He volunteers as a community police officer, and is involved in social activism and public and community activities. Gershon holds a bachelor’s degree in informal education, and is a qualified community education professional.
Neta is the coordinator of the “Connecting Bridge” program, a partnership between Afula-Gilboa and the Jewish communities of southern New England. She has been involved in Jewish-Zionist education for over a decade, and served as an emissary of the Jewish Agency for Israel to the universities in Toronto. In her current role, she is responsible for the connections and relationships between residents of Afula-Gilboa and the partner Jewish communities in the United States. This includes hosting incoming missions, and leading various projects of the partnership, such as a youth leadership program and a community service year program abroad. Neta holds a bachelor’s degree in community social education and communications from Oranim Academic College. She is single, and lives in Afula.
Noga is director of the Tarbut school in Afula, which trains artists, writers, and creatives to become change agents in communities in the periphery. The school provides education for a range of ages, but focuses on young adults in the city and surrounding region. Noga also leads young women’s groups in Afula on gender, feminism, and female creativity, and is active in the Bo’ena women’s cabaret in the city. This latter enterprise is a pilot for creating additional groups of women in Afula who are aware, organized, and socially active on behalf of other women. Noga is currently completing a bachelor’s degree in education and art at the Beit Berl College’s “Hamidrasha” Faculty of Arts.
Omer is an educational/social program director for the Afula municipality, responsible for a variety of violence-prevention programs. He manages the Afula municipal park, with an area of 45 acres, and is responsible for its upkeep and for organizing activities for the park’s visitors. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration, and a qualification in industrial engineering and management. He is married and a father of three, and lives in Afula as a third-generation resident of the city.
Dana is a family and community coordinator in the “Future Horizons” program in Afula, responsible for providing financial guidance to families in the program, helping them exercise their rights, facilitating groups, nurturing community relations, and developing community projects. Her vision is to reduce social and economic gaps by increasing awareness of rights, and by helping people gain the skills to become economically independent. Dana holds a bachelor’s degree in communications from Sapir College, and a master’s degree in management and conflict resolution, including a diploma in mediation, from the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. She lives on Kibbutz Dovrat.
Mor is coordinator of graduate activities and director of the Ohel theater (belonging to the Tarbut [“Culture”] Movement) in Afula, and is responsible for the activities of the movement’s artist-educators active in various institutions in the city. As part of the movement’s activities, she also produces cultural events in Afula, develops models for culture in the community, and is responsible for relations with various representatives in the municipality. Mor is studying for a bachelor’s degree in art and a teaching diploma, in Tarbut’s special study program at Beit Berl College.
Shai is a social activist and director of the “Yezreel Quarter – Afula” Facebook group, working to build a community in the new Yezreel Quarter in the city, and to develop cooperation between the municipality and the nascent community. He is active in encouraging residents to be involved in their environment, and promoting cooperation within the community. Shai is a software engineer at Intel, a graduate of the IDF’s Naval Officer School, and holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering and management from the Technion. He is married and a father of three, and lives in Afula.
Yarden directs the Afula municipality’s youth social involvement programs, implementing the Ministry of Education plan for “Personal Development and Social Involvement for Youth.” She guides and mentors the city’s schools on social involvement issues, and works to develop relations with volunteering organizations in the city and create new volunteering programs for young people. Yarden holds a bachelor’s degree in educational counseling from the University of Haifa, and a special education teaching diploma from Oranim Academic College of Education.
Michal is an educational counselor and home room teacher at the ORT Afula educational campus. As a counselor, she focuses on leading the school’s array of therapeutic services and on student emotional welfare, while building partnerships between parents, teachers, and the school. She also tutors teachers and parents on caring for students, and works with the school’s various student committees. Michal holds a bachelor’s degree in special education, sociology, and anthropology, a special education teaching diploma, and a degree in educational counseling.
For the last decade Avishai has been involved in education, teaching, and social activism, mainly in the field of sustainability and the environment. He has set up a Center for Local Sustainability in Upper Afula, to form part of a national network of sustainability centers. Avishai holds a bachelor’s degree from Bar-Ilan University in Land of Israel studies (archaeology track), a master’s degree in geography (with a specialization in site development), and a teaching diploma in Land of Israel studies.
Riki is the supervisor of Haredi girls’ schools in the Ministry of Education’s northern district, and was formerly principal of an elementary school in Afula. She is responsible for control and oversight over Haredi institutions which are recognized by the Ministry of Education but not part of the state system, and for educational organizational development and learning within them. Riki is active in promoting full integration of Haredi society into wider society, in the realms of education, economy, and security. She holds a bachelor’s degree in education from the Levinsky College of Education, and a master’s degree in public policy from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.
Ohad is the founder and director of Roundglobe, a digital marketing agency providing advanced marketing solutions for businesses, nonprofits, and public institutions. He also acts as a consultant and mentor to entrepreneurs and businesses, including on behalf of the Israel Small and Medium Enterprises Authority, and directs a variety of projects in the fields of online commerce, marketing strategy, and communications and information technologies. Ohad holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology and anthropology from the Max Stern Yezreel Valley College, and a master’s degree in communications and journalism from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. He lives in Afula.
Nijmi Abbas is the head of nursing at a corrective clinic belonging to the Clalit HMO. She is a member of the Tamra al-Zeitoun non-profit organization at the Shfar’am Anthroposophic school, a member of the Civil Forum for Health Promotion in the Galilee, and a member of the Health Council at the Shfar’am municipality, as well as one of the founders of the city’s health forum. Nijmi believes that local authorities should be involved in health promotion as part of their responsibility for residents’ welfare, and wants to establish an international strategic organization to develop health programs and teach healthy lifestyles. She holds a multidisciplinary bachelor’s degree from the University of Haifa, and has completed an advanced course in geriatrics. Nijmi is married and a mother of four.
Eliezer Breuer is the middle school coordinator at the AMIT Yehuda comprehensive high school in Afula, and one of the founders of the Orot Yehuda “garin torani” (religious social-activist communal group) for families in Migdal HaEmek. He is a member of the Kanfei Ruah group working to improve elementary schools in Migdal HaEmek, and is active in promoting heterogeneous and egalitarian regional education systems that allow anyone who is interested to come and learn. Eliezer is a life coach and volunteers for a hotline for religious men who have suffered sexual abuse. He holds a bachelor’s degree in special education and a master’s degree in educational management and organization. He is married and a father of four, and lives in Migdal HaEmek.
Avi Chapnick is the principal of the Honi HaMe’agel elementary school in Hazor Haglilit. He is also one of the founders of the educational “garin” (social-activist communal group) in Hazor, and served as its coordinator in its early years. He is also the town’s coordinator of volunteers. Avi wants to transform the Israeli education system into an international beacon for values-based education, by introducing a future-oriented approach that will make the best possible use of Israel’s unique qualities. Avi holds a bachelor’s degree in Bible and Jewish studies, and holds a master’s degree in education that included a thesis on teaching Bible. He is currently studying at Ono Academic College for a second master’s degree in organizational consulting for education systems. Avi is a father of nine and has one granddaughter, and lives in Hazor Haglilit.
Nizar Daaka is the principal of the Ein Naquba Comprehensive High School, run by the Branco Weiss Institute, which is a unique model of a comprehensive school for the non-Jewish sector in Israel. He is a founding member of Joint Israeli Leadership, a nonprofit organization working to establish a study program for Arab-Jewish leadership aimed at high-school graduates. Nizar is also a member of the Ministry of Education group, “Principals Pioneering for Israeli Hope.” He retired from the IDF Manpower Corps with the rank of lieutenant colonel. He holds a master’s degree in public administration and national security, and is a qualified group facilitator and life coach. He is married and a father of three, and lives in Shfar’am.
Uri Deutch is the principal of a religious high school in Beit She’an, where he is responsible for the development and success of 600 students from seventh to twelfth grade. He is devoted to introducing innovative and unique programs that can help reinforce students’ strengths and increase the percentage of students who attain a high-quality matriculation certificate. Uri seeks to change the education system so that it includes emotional empowerment as a significant component of the curriculum and of evaluation methods. He holds a bachelor’s degree in education and a master’s degree in Jewish education, both from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Uri is married and a father of six, and lives in Hazor Haglilit.
Aziza Diab is the director of the Shfar’am Municipal Cultural Center, and is responsible for developing and promoting cultural activities for all ages at the center and throughout the city: exhibitions, poetry and literature events, shows, and festivals. She also directs the Karev Foundation’s “Rainbow” program for arts in the Arab sector, writes and develops enrichment programs for kindergarten through middle school, and oversees the training of arts counselors employed in schools as part of the program. Aziza is interested in empowerment and in changing ways of thinking by using art. She holds a bachelor’s degree in art and English literature from the University of Haifa and a master’s degree in art education from the University of Leeds. Aziza studied management of arts and cultural institutions at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya and studied group facilitation at Oranim Academic College of Education.
Shai Gil works to improve public awareness of the revolution in stem cell (bone marrow) donation, the ease with which it is now possible to save lives, and the need to increase the “Struggle for Life” bone marrow registry at Hadassah Hospital, which is named for the late Eli Elkobi. Shai manages the spit4life.com website, which provides simple home saliva test kits enabling people to join the Hadassah bone marrow registry. His goal is for every citizen of Israel to be included in the registry. Shai volunteers for “Struggle for Life” and for the Israel Cancer Association. He holds a bachelor’s degree in communications from the Max Stern Academic College of Emek Yezreel, and lives in Haifa.
Rola Hassoun is the human resources director for Druzenet, a project management company in the north of Israel, and is the Shfar’am community coordinator for the Ofakim La’atid (Future Horizons) nonprofit, which is devoted to youth empowerment. Her vision is to reduce social inequality both by increasing the number of women in the workforce (especially religious women), and by increasing access to education, particularly higher education. Rola holds a bachelor’s degree in human services, leadership, and education policy from the University of Haifa, and a diploma in bookkeeping from the Ministry of the Economy and the Michlala LeMinhal College of Management in Haifa. She lives in Shfar’am.
Amal Jarrus is a homeroom teacher and the social education coordinator at the Shfar’am municipal high school. She is active in women’s sports, particularly basketball, and is a professional player for the Israeli women’s national basketball team and the women’s team of Ramat Hasharon in Israel’s Premier League. Amal is also a qualified basketball coach. She seeks to enable as many girls as possible, of all ages and from all parts of Shfar’am, to be active members of the city’s basketball family and hopes to change the city’s priorities in terms of budgets and resource allocation. Amal holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and a master’s degree in educational system management.
Asma Khaldy is a homeroom teacher and the computer studies coordinator at the Elharubiya elementary school in Shfar’am. She is active in promoting women’s education, particularly among Bedouin women in the Shfar’am area. Asma is a member of the Shfar’am Women’s Forum, which promotes women’s empowerment and the involvement of women in social action. She believes that the key to social progress lies in improving women’s status and education. Asma holds a bachelor’s degree in teaching math and science from the Arab Academic College of Education in Haifa, and a master’s degree in educational administration, policy, and leadership from the Open University. Asma is married and a mother of four, and lives in Shfar’am.
Dr. Amir Khnifess is the director of the Druze Association for Science and Leadership. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Middle Eastern history from the University of Haifa, a master’s degree in public administration from the university’s political science department, and a second master’s degree from the department of government at the London School of Economics. Amir’s PhD is from the department of politics and international studies at the London School of Oriental and African Studies, and his doctoral dissertation explores political behavior and relations between non-Jewish minorities and the State of Israel. Amir seeks to help make Israel a multicultural society whose residents coexist in peace and equality.
Claudia Koby is the co-founder of Krembo Wings, a youth movement for children with and without disabilities, and is a member of the organization’s board of directors and chair of its steering committee. She is the mother of Kfir, the movement’s first member and inspiration. Claudia created and developed the movement’s educational philosophy and professional approach of Krembo Wings, was a partner in formulating its vision and guiding values, and plays an instrumental role in the growth and development of the movement. She is a social activist, who is working to change perceptions and attitudes toward people with disabilities in today’s society.
Ran Levi is the station chief of the Tiberias police station. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a master’s degree in political science from the University of Haifa. Ran’s vision is to foster cooperation and create synergy in Israel’s heterogeneous society, through mutual trust, in order to increase confidence in the Israel Police. He is married and a father of five.
Laila Najar Amouri is the co-director of the Moms@Work project of the Israel Women’s Network. She advances programs for Arab Palestinian society, and particularly for Arab women. Her vision is to see Arab women in positions of power in local government. Laila is developing a new program for Arab society involving sheltered housing for the elderly. She is also highly active in promoting partnerships between Jews and Arabs. Laila holds a bachelor’s degree in literature and multidisciplinary studies from the University of Haifa, and a master’s degree in gender studies from Bar-Ilan University. She also has a diploma in group facilitation from the University of Haifa. Laila has five daughters, and lives in Shfar’am.
Ilanit Natan is the managing director of the Kohel Group for entrepreneurship in science and technology education, which specializes in promoting unique programs that help develop critical thinking through science and technology at enrichment centers for children and youth in underprivileged and disadvantaged neighborhoods. She is active in promoting social enterprises for youth that also involve the elderly and the entire community. Ilanit is interested in leading change and empowering disadvantaged groups by means of social enterprises. She holds a master’s degree in communications and technology from Bar-Ilan University, and has a continuing education certificate in group facilitation and individual and group coaching. Ilanit is married and a mother of two, and lives on Moshav Gan Yoshiyah in Emek Hefer.
Ella Nave is the coordinator of Mothers and Fathers Saving Haifa and the Krayot, a voluntary organization that she founded. For the last 13 years, she has worked to improve environmental health policy in Israel: first by leading the Coalition for Public Health, for which she wrote the first Hebrew reports on the effects of air pollution on women and children, and subsequently for Mothers and Fathers Saving Haifa and the Krayot. For the last three years, she has fought the construction of a new refinery planned for the Haifa bay area. Ella works to change public priorities in order to save lives, reduce human suffering, and improve public health. She is married and a mother of three children.
Hila Rubin Shalem is the director of the Ramot Begin Community Center in Haifa. She is also on the board of directors of the Kiryat Ata municipal network of community centers and serves as a voluntary advisor to the mayor on youth and young adults. Previously, Hila was a city council member in Kiryat Ata and was the chair of its Youth Council. Hila seeks to create a society that is just, tolerant, and accepting, which provides equal opportunities and invests in strengthening communities and mutual responsibility. She holds a bachelor’s degree in community theater and the humanities, and a master’s degree in public administration and public policy, both from the University of Haifa. She is married and a mother of twins, and lives in Kiryat Ata.
Somood Sife teaches biology and chemistry at Comprehensive Secondary School #3 in Shfar’am. She is a representative to the National Teachers’ Association, a social and political activist, and a volunteer for the Na’amat women’s organization in the Central Galilee region. A member of the Democratic Women’s Movement, Somood ran for election to the local council, and has served as the chair of the Shfar’am Women’s Council. She is interested in promoting the integration of women in local politics, and influencing local authority budgetary allocations. She is also a keen mountain biker, riding with the Arab Cycling Club. Somood holds a bachelor’s degree in biology and chemistry teaching from the Arab Academic College of Education in Haifa, and a master’s degree in science teaching from Oranim Academic College. She is married and a mother of two, and lives in Shfar’am.
Yara Sleman is a social worker in Shfar’am, and is a community and social activist involved in helping the needy in a number of settings – the workplace, churches, the Scouts, mosques, and zakat (charity) committees. She is a committed vegan and seeker of world peace. Her professional vision is to reduce the socioeconomic gaps between residents of Shfar’am, and her personal vision is to promote love and compassion between all living things. Yara holds a bachelor’s degree in social work from the University of Haifa.
Maram Yasin is a community social worker and the head of welfare projects in Tamra for the national “Cities without Violence” program, which is run by the Ministry of Internal Security. In this capacity, she initiates and leads projects to promote discourse and cooperation in society and community. Maram seeks to advance gender equality and justice in Israel, particularly regarding the representation of Arab women in public life. She holds a research master’s degree (cum laude) in organization and administration, and a certificate in group facilitation, both from the University of Haifa. She is also studying at Gordon College of Education for a teaching certificate.
Nir Yona-Cohen is the deputy station chief of the Zevulun police station in Haifa, which serves residents of the Krayot region, Nesher, and Tivon. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Derby, a master’s degree in Oriental studies from Tel Aviv University, and a master’s degree in criminology from the University of Haifa. Nir is committed to improving social resilience in Israel. He is divorced and a father of three.
Saber Yousfen is the director of the youth division of the Shfar’am municipality, the deputy chair of the Israel Association of Youth Division Directors, and a facilitator of youth councils for the Ministry of Education’s Northern Region. He is responsible for leadership development and empowering youth to take responsibility for Israeli society, and for Arab Israeli society in particular. He seeks to make the world a safer place for children. Saber holds a bachelor’s degree in education and Arabic and Hebrew instruction, and has an advanced diploma in informal education, with a specialization in developing social and community programs, from the Arab Academic College of Education in Haifa. He is studying at Ono Academic College for a master’s degree in organizational consulting to educational institutions. Saber is married and a father of three, and lives in Shfar’am.
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