EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR'S REPORT
Dear JPB Family and Friends,
The consequences of COVID-19 for JPB in 2020 can best be described as an encounter of “forced grace.” Even as the pandemic upended established patterns both in JPB and wider society, JPB’s dynamic staff and generous donors were quick to respond. They each deserve full credit for our current position of strategic opportunity.
Thanks to their commitment, our programs, partnerships and impact multiplied, and so did the necessary funding. Outcomes include initiatives in the West Bank, among disadvantaged minority schools in Israel, and with several American, Israeli and Palestinian peer organizations.
With 2021, JPB enters the second decade of its educational mission for peace and reconciliation. JPB educational operations focused on providing English-language, on-line programs for youth in schools in Jerusalem and Israel (in close partnership with the Municipality of Jerusalem and Excellence on the Periphery). In the West Bank, JPB provided staff training for the Palestinian peace organization Taghyeer. In the United States, we offered programs for Interfaith Youth Houston, St. Nersess Armenian Orthodox Seminary, and the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut. Along with increased professional visibility and organizational partnerships, the programs yielded the following results: in 2020, JPB worked directly with 2,382 individuals (both youth and adults) for an average of 5.5 hours each (ranges from 1.25 hours to 40 hours per individual).
In 2020, The State of Israel registered a charitable Jerusalem Peacebuilders affiliate, JPB Leadership Development (JPBLD). Special thanks go to JPB Jerusalem Region Co-Director Yardena Prawer, JPBLD Director Natasha Nahhas (Jerusalem), our attorney at Reshef & Shiff (Jerusalem), and accountants at Ben David ShaleviKop, CPA (Jerusalem) for accomplishing this tedious and herculean task.
During 2020, JPB received a record amount of donations. The inspiring generosity of the board and other donors graced JPB with a strong budget surplus for 2020. Thank you. This surplus allows for two important developments. First, the creation of a Second Decade reserve fund which will underwrite strategic expansion as well as the employment of a new executive director in early 2025. Second, this fund and the vision for its use will catalyze a first-ever JPB capital campaign.
Thanks to the careful nurturing of organizational relationships and the staff’s creation of an effective zoom learning format, our in-school programs continue to expand in Jerusalem, Israel, Palestine and Houston.
2020 left JPB well positioned in the local peacebuilding field. Opportunity abounds. Our challenge is to craft a strategic plan in 2021 that provides the tools, funding, and approach to enhance JPB’s systemic impact on key constituencies participating in the conflict.
Peace, Shalom, Salaam,
(The Rev. Canon) Nicholas Porter
Executive Director, Jerusalem Peacebuilders