The Amal Educational Network seeks funding to launch a new innovative initiative titled “Journey into Israeli Society and Democracy.” This week-long journey is a pivotal component of Amal’s comprehensive transformation into the first Mamlachti-Democratic education network in Israel. Our initiative aims to provide students with a profound, inclusive understanding of Israeli society. Through a series of carefully curated meetings, activities, lectures, and trips, the journey will foster a long-lasting appreciation for the diversity that makes Israeli society unique, emphasizing democratic values and shared societal responsibilities.

Current educational journeys in Israeli schools focus on Zionism, Judaism, and Holocaust remembrance. These journeys, while important, highlight an Israeli identity primarily rooted in victimhood and a singular, often orthodox, perspective of Judaism, overlooking Israel’s minority groups and other issues of debate. The existing programs lack input from the school community. Consequently, they fail to reflect the multifaceted nature of Israeli society and the rich diversity of Jewish thought and practice.

Amal’s proposed journey to Israeli Society aims to create an educational experience that highlights the diversity within Israeli society, encouraging students to appreciate and get familiiar with different cultural, religious and ideological perspectives. By involving students, parents and teachers in crafting the program, we ensure that it resonates with the values and expectations of the local community, fostering a more inclusive and liberal approach to education.

The journey’s Objectives will be to promote diversity and inclusion by exposing students to the various communities within Israel, including Arabs, Druze, and Bedouins, who are integral to the Amal community, foster democratic values through lectures, visits and debates, expand religious understanding by teaching students about the different religions, and encourage Community Involvement by leveraging the journey as an opportunity for discussion, collaboratively design the journey’s curriculum, ensuring it aligns with the school’s vision and values.

By the end of the journey, which will be the pick of a yearlong program, we expect students to gain a deeper understanding of Israeli society, to develop a stronger appreciation for complexities and diversities and to have a sense of belonging to their community, society and the state of Israel. The number of journeys will depend on the budget allocated to the project. Although Amal will evaluate the success of the project in the end of the first year, we hope that the project will span 3-5 years, in order to make a meaningful change and in order to be used as a model for other schools and networks.