People to People Connections

An Essential Component to the Peace Process

WHY THIS MATTERS

While it is essential to work on achieving a resolution to the conflict at the diplomatic and political level, any agreement “transacted” by governments must be “translated” and sustained by the people to realize its intent.

In Israel’s segregated society, Arabs and Jews, Palestinians and Israelis have dwindling opportunity for significant contact and fewer and fewer opportunities to confront their prejudices and fears in a constructive manner.  People to people organizations strive to offer meaningful, substantive interaction, an antidote to the hostility and negativity that festers even more virulently when there is no political or diplomatic horizon in sight.

J Street supports increasing funding for people to people programs that bring Israelis and Palestinians together at the grassroots level, including efforts to combat violence and incitement, including the establishment of an International Fund modeled on that created for Northern Ireland.

KEY POINTS

  1. Palestinian and Israeli NGOs must use their networks, skills and experience to insist on cooperation with one another.
  2. Dialogue, cross-border activities, and physical interactions are the best tools to change mindsets and foster democratic ideas of self-determination and peace.
  3. Israeli NGOs and activists must stand strong against de-legitimization attempts.

HOW YOU CAN SUPPORT THE PEOPLE TO PEOPLE COMMUNITY

Advocate with your local Members of Congress to support the International Fund for Israeli-Palestinian Peace.

Seek opportunities in your community to amplify the messages of these courageous, honorable men, women and children by visiting the websites listed below, hosting events for them in your communities, or attending relevant events in J Street’s calendar. These events increase grassroots activists’ hope and resolve in knowing that allies in the US are willing to help.

LEARN MORE

Fathom Forum with John Lyndon and Joel Braunold

Periscope

Joel Braunold, executive director of the Alliance for Middle East Peace, analyzes the latest thought trends among youth in Israel, West Bank and Gaza and what they mean for the future of the two state solution.

Coexistence campaign launched by Labour Friends of Israel

Jewish News via Times of Israel

A British progressive, pro-Israel group launched a campaign for the establishment of an International Fund for Israeli-Palestinian peace which would "distribute £150m annually to support people-to-people coexistence initiatives."

We Must Continue to Push for Peace at Grassroots level

Times of Israel Blog

Ian Austin, British Labour Member of Parliament, and member of Labour Friends of Israel makes the case for an International Fund for Israeli-Palestinian Peace. Saying, "We have the chance now to sow the seeds for future success."

"More Relevant Than Ever: People-to-People Peacebuilding Efforts in Israel and Palestine"

Palestine Israel Journal

Written by the late Ron Pundak in 2012, this article explains why civil society’s voice is a fundamental component of the peace building and sustaining equation.

“Tribal Schisms Tearing Israel Apart, Rivlin Cautions”

Times of Israel

President Rivlin cautions against the deterioration of Israeli society due to increasing polarization.

"The International Fund for Israeli-Palestinian Peace"

Alliance for Middle East Peace

ALLMEP proposes a structure for the creation of an International Fund to promote broad support for peace.

ORGANIZATIONS

Join the Women’s Leadership Forum!

The Women’s Leadership Forum (WLF) of J Street invites you to become a member. Founded in 2013, WLF raises awareness and advocates for the significant role that women and civil society can and do play in peace building and negotiations.

Once you have joined WLF, you will be invited to join the WLF Email Discussion Group. There is no fee associated with membership.

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