The Weintraub Israel Center, a joint project of the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona and the JCC, is dedicated to bringing the cultural richness of Israel to Tucson. From Israel travel information to cultural programs, community dialogues, and innovative Tucson-Israel Partnerships, the Weintraub Israel Center is Tucson’s premier resource for all things Israeli. The Center focuses on fostering a strong Jewish identity with Israel at heart.
The Weintraub Israel Center’s mission is to engage the Jewish Community of Southern Arizona as well as the broader community in building a living bridge to Israel, its people and its history. This is accomplished by using educational experiences, advocacy and outreach. Since its establishment in 1997, the Center has had a profound impact on our community, bringing Israel into our lives in dynamic ways.
In 2011, the Israel Center was re-named the Weintraub Israel Center to honor Ron and Diane Weintraub for their vision, leadership and generous support (http://azjewishpost.com/2011/weintraubs-give-their-name-endowment-to-israel-center/).
We use multiple ways to educate the Jewish and greater Tucson Communities regarding Israel, in order to provide a deep, multi-faceted, realistic, and non-polemical picture of Israel that goes beyond head-lines and slogans regarding the Israeli-Arab conflict.
Tucson is successfully partnering with the Israeli communities of Kyriat Malachi and Hof Ashkelon. This endeavor provides the opportunity for our communities to connect and interpersonal relationships to flourish. We focus on two areas; first- the people-to-people aspect allows individuals to meet one another, share, connect and build relationships, second- inviting Tucson volunteers, to take part in the amazing Zionist project of making Israel a better Jewish democratic State. We have invited speakers, students, IDF soldiers, artists, authors and activists. Each shares his or her unique perspective on Israel, and connecting to members of our community whether they meet at a lecture or are hosted in their homes. Partnership 2Gether (P2G) is a program of the Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI).
School twinning program is an educational program whose goal is to develop connections between pre-schools, elementary schools and high schools in Hof Ashkelon and Kiryat Malachi with the THA Jewish School, the synagogue supplementary schools and the public schools in Tucson. The connection is based on the common learning experience of the values of Jewish identity, Jewish peoplehood, Culture and Israel as the Jewish state. The program additionally enables ties between teachers and students on both sides of the ocean, allowing them to learn more about themselves and their friends abroad, and to get to know them on a personal level, using a variety of technological tools that facilitate joint dialogue and study.
What are Shinshinim?
For the third year the Weintraub Israel Center, in collaboration with Tucson’s Congregations and agencies, are proud to bring the Shinshinim L’Tucson 2018/2019 program to the Tucson community once again.
Shinshinim is an acronym for shnat sherut, meaning a year of service. The program brings recent high school graduates from Israel to nurture close relationships with their host communities in Tucson.
The Israel Action Network (IAN) is a strategic initiative of The Jewish Federations of North America, in partnership with the Jewish Council for Public Affairs, created to counter assaults made on Israel’s legitimacy. Our work is grounded in building strong relationships with people of faith, human rights advocates, political and civic leaders, and friends and neighbors in our community.
AMIR EDEN is director of the WEINTRAUB ISRAEL CENTER, a joint project of the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona and the Tucson Jewish Community Center. Eden recently served as director of Israel education at the Dr. Miriam & Sheldon G. Adelson Educational Campus in Las Vegas. Prior to that, he was principal of the Jess Schwartz Academy High School in Scottsdale. In Las Vegas, he also founded branches of the Israeli American Council and Tzofim (Israeli Scouts).
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