In Israel, deep social divides continue to undermine generations of peacemaking efforts. With key institutional partners like USAID, PPI has continued to grow despite ongoing violence and political setbacks. In 2015, PPI – ME united more than 500 Arab and Jewish youth in the Jerusalem Area, Center Region, and North of Israel, while also empowering young women, recognizing the tremendous benefit sport can have for females.
Professional Israeli basketball player Rivka Ross hails from a politically right-wing family that lives in a West Bank Settlement. Despite her initial aversion to working with Palestinians, Rivka recently began coaching one of PPI – ME mixed Israeli and Palestinian teams. In May, 2015 Rivka testified to a CNN reporter that her life, and even her family’s lives, have changed as a result of PeacePlayers, and how she is constantly working to make sure that referees treat her Palestinian players equally, even lodging formal complaints to the Israel Basketball Association in cases of discriminatory treatment.
- 96% program graduates hold positive attitudes about the “other side”
- 1,000 hours of community service completed
- 72% of participants are female
- 11 program graduates certified as coaches and facilitators
- 1 U18 Israeli National League Championship