This summer, JPB led a record four interfaith leadership and peacebuilding programs, involving over 100 youth and adults. By far, it was our biggest summer ever. The programs featured engaging workshops, guest speakers, dialogues, recreation, field trips, service-projects, and residential living. These unique opportunities to encounter the other examined core program themes such as the hero's journey, service-learning, interfaith citizenship, and leadership. Through visits to refugee resettlement agencies, diplomatic missions, public art projects, museums, environmental conservation efforts, and Jewish, Christian and Muslim faith communities, teens wrestled with societal issues and social justice themes shared by much of the world.
U.S. Deputy Amb. Cohen addresses JPB teens at the US Mission to the UN in NYC
By presenting teens with opportunities to learn and practice leadership, they gained hands-on knowledge and skills that carry on well into their professional and adult lives. By encountering the needy and lending a helping hand to those affected by violence and natural disaster, they developed a deeper sense of empathy and our shared humanity. Going home, JPB participants continue to struggle with the troubling realities of daily life in America and the Holy Lands.
This fall, JPB is continuing its programming with summer institute participants, affording them opportunities to meet back up and reflect on their amazing summer in the USA. With roughly half of 2018 participants being former alumni, their lasting friendships and commitment to each other grows ever stronger.