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A special poster exhibition is part of an international project to encourage design students from around the world to express their views on the issue of remembering the Holocaust.

holremembrance
Yad Vashem

 

Northern Israel's Daliat el-Carmel and neighboring Usfiya offer visitors a colorful array of Druze cuisine, crafts and hospitality.

druze3Druze villagers bake pita at roadside stands (Photo: Israel Ministry of Tourism)

 
 
An Avant-Premiere of Woody Allan's "Midnight in Paris" - the opening film at the 2011 Canes festival - was screened at the Tel Aviv Cinemateque on Friday evening.
 
Head of DATA, Diaa Hammad. (left)
Mr. Diaa Hammad, the Second Secretary from the Egyptian Embassy in Tel Aviv and  President of DATA, (Diplomatic Association Tel Aviv) initiated the event along with Tali Farkas from the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzilya: Mr. Farkas is a student of government diplomacy and strategy.
 

The concept behind the evening, as put forth by Mr. Diaa Hammad, was for the diplomatic core in Tel Aviv to get together in casual circumstances and "have fun."
The IDC (Interdisciplinary Center) students who volunteered in helping design the event were enthused to participate, due to data being such a respected platform in which to network with diplomats while learning some of the nuances about the various diplomatic corps.
 

Just as the dress-code of the event was casual, so was the atmosphere. Clearly, the evening was a success with the contingent of dignitaries in attendance as the relaxed atmosphere dictated that the evening would be centered around a tranquil night at the movies without having to focus on the usual issues parlayed at diplomatic events.
 
 
Photo courtesy of DATA
 

The Golda Meir Mount Carmel Training Center is one of Israel's many avenues for improving the lives of disadvantaged peoples in Africa and Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, Eastern Europe, and other countries. 

Israel has had a big influence on early childhood education in Nepal, reveals Yvonne Lipman, the spokesperson for the Golda Meir Mount Carmel Training Center (MCTC), named after Israel's first and only female prime minister.

After embarking to the African continent over 50 years ago, Golda Meir recognized the great need there, and through the Israeli international development organization - MASHAV- decided that instead of giving fish to Africans and other disadvantaged populations, she would give them the expertise to fish for themselves. That is an example of sustainable thinking decades before the idea came into fashion in the rest of the Western world.

Since then, Israel has impacted the lives of millions of people in developing nations through its training programs in agriculture, education and medicine.

Out of the MASHAV model, and begun by Meir herself, was the women's training center in Haifa's Carmel Mountain area. This is the same region where a ravaging forest fire gripped the nation only half a year ago. But at a conference at the end of May, more than 70 women leaders from 38 countries met to discuss the topic of 'Science, Technology and Innovation: Education and Training for Women and Girls.'

It's no secret to anyone, including the United Nations, that women can be a powerful force of change in developing societies. They are the support network that glues people, families and societies together. But they can also lead companies and countries. Tap into training women, and you can change the world from the ground up, as the center's motto indicates.
 

Taking their motto to the classroom and field

The women at the event were world leaders in their own right, also representing three major development organizations including the United National Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). They came to celebrate the 50th anniversary of a program to which women have been invited for training from more than 140 countries.

Out of the MASHAV model, and begun by Meir herself, was the women's training center in Haifa's Carmel Mountain area. This is the same region where a ravaging forest fire gripped the nation only half a year ago. But at a conference at the end of May, more than 70 women leaders from 38 countries met to discuss the topic of 'Science, Technology and Innovation: Education and Training for Women and Girls.'

It's no secret to anyone, including the United Nations, that women can be a powerful force of change in developing societies. They are the support network that glues people, families and societies together. But they can also lead companies and countries. Tap into training women, and you can change the world from the ground up, as the center's motto indicates.

Taking their motto to the classroom and field

The women at the event were world leaders in their own right, also representing three major development organizations including the United National Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). They came to celebrate the 50th anniversary of a program to which women have been invited for training from more than 140 countries.

These women have participated in training seminars either in Israel or in their cooperating countries. The MCTC training encourages the women to build support networks among themselves, and in some cases the trainees continue the work of the center by implementing teaching programs in their home countries. The center provides custom-made workshops and programs based on need and request.

"We were founded by Golda Meir in 1961 after a visit she made to Africa and she realized the absolute necessity of helping women over in the African nations to become independent. "Israel had reached its independence in 1948," says Lipman " and so could act as a living laboratory for the newly emerging states."

"On a visit there Meir saw there was a desperate case to help get the women trained and to do something with their people. Together with Mina Ben Zvi, and Swedish Ambassador to Israel, Inga Thorsson, they founded the Mount Carmel Training Center. The founding of the Center was marked by an international women's conference, and we are now holding the 27th women leaders conference. That's the chain," Lipman explains.

Between those 27 biennial meetings, she says, 17,000 people have passed through the training center. "We have four major themes, which are early childhood education, income generation, community development and gender equality."

 

Trained in Israel, leading internationally

Isn't feminism dead? "We were into gender equality before it came into the UN agenda in Mexico in 1975. Israel was there way before the rest of the world," Lipman says. "We are not talking about feminism. We are talking about women leaders."

At the conference, she says, woman after woman gets up to describe how women in their countries are still not getting higher degrees, but working as teachers and civil servants.

One of these leaders is Stella Tamang from Nepal, a Buddhist in a Hindu nation, who first came to Israel on a training course in 1979 and has stayed in touch since with all the other women from Nepal whom she trained with. These women today are very influential in the early childhood education system in Nepal, says Lipman.

"What Israel - what the MCTC - gave them has strongly influenced early childhood education in Nepal," she notes.

MCTC was also on the scene giving psychosocial support to children in countries hit by AIDS from the earliest days of the epidemic. On the home front, it provides programs for developing the potential of women locally. "We give Palestinian and Israeli women intensive weekends for ... building new realities," she concludes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

As every year, after the holiday of Pesach, business man and ex- parliament member Raffi Elul and his wife Ofra opens their home in Mazkeret Batia to many friends, businessmen, parliament members and other distinguished members in order to have the Mimuna, a traditional Moroccan ceremony that celebrates the return of the "Chametz" to the table.

President Peres singing with Raffi Elul and his wife Ofra.
Among the guests of honor were the president Shimon Peres, politicians such as Binyamin Ben-Eliezer and Tzipi Livni, musicians like David Krivoshei, business figures like Shery arrison, ambassadors and diplomats.

The crowd enjoyed Kuskus and Mufletas and sang along with Einat Saruf, who convinced president Peres to sing alongside Raffi Elul and his wife.

Mimuna.

 

Photos Silvia Golan