Givat Haviva the HaKibbutz
The Givat Haviva Centre, named after paratrooper Haviva Reik, was
founded in 1949 as the central seminar for HaKibbutz HaArtzi HaShomer HaTzair.
It is a unique educational centre, holding seminars and workshops, recording,
investigating and publishing, holding conferences and offering programmes for
youths and adults in the formal and informal education systems on a variety of
professional and academic topics.
Several different action and research centres operate in Givat
Haviva, chiefly Yad Ya'ari, HaShomer HaTzair records and research centre, which
we describe in detail in this book on page ____, and the Jewish-Arab Centre for
Peace. The Jewish-Arab Centre for Peace leads the programme for inter-community
cooperation, acting alongside the Institute for Arabic Studies, the Sarah and
Ya'acov Eshel Peace Library, the international department and the art centre.
The Jewish-Arab Centre for
The Jewish-Arab Centre for Peace at Givat Haviva is the oldest,
largest and the leading centre in Israel for peace and reconciliation between
Israelis and Palestinians and for encouraging understanding between Israelis
and Arabs in Israel. The Centre has been active since 1963, its goal being to
bring the Jews and Arabs in Israel closer together and to teach familiarity and
partnership between the two peoples. The Centre is staffed by Arab and Jewish
personnel working side by side and the Centre serves thousands of pupils,
teachers, public figures, social leaders and others, who participate in our
various programmes every year.
The Jewish-Arab Centre for Peace at Givat Haviva is well known
around the world outside Israel and has won many international awards,
including the UNESCO Prize for Peace Education (2001) in recognition of its
many years of activity promoting Jewish-Arab dialogue and reconciliation.
Cooperation – the Givat Haviva flagship programme
The inter-community cooperation programme as a Givat Haviva
initiative and it represents an aspiration for social strength in the
settlements and communities through the involvement of all their residents in
public and social life. The primary goal is to create a sustainable partnership
between Jewish and Arab communities, which will form the basis for a civilian society
and co-existence in Israel.
The programme has been running for four years and has set itself the
goal of integrating civilians and leadership in a variety of settlements
characterised by social division. In the coming years, activity will be focussed
on forming a network of partnerships between neighbouring Jewish and Arab
communities as a basis for cultivating a shared society in Israel. This would
not be merely an institutional cooperation, as these municipal frames would
cultivate a core of communal leadership and activists who will bring in more
and more partners through activity in the field.
Through common civilian discussion, the programme will set up
sustainable frameworks for cooperation between communities in dispute, will
train and instruct men and women in all strata of society to build programmes
suitable for their home communities to provide for common interests and needs.
The programme is meant to drive people as agents of change and empower them
through common frame-shattering activity in implementing community programmes. The
programme will also work hard on research and development of new models for
building partnerships between communities as a basis for a life together of
cultural and social differences.
Givat Haviva aspires through this programme to set up a current and
innovative model that will run for years and lead to a change in the social
climate in the settlement, the region, the country and the world.
"Children Teaching Children" (CTC) project for ninth graders in 10
(encounters) project for around 5,000 eleventh graders in 30 schools (the
project is supported by the ministry of education).
for the Arab sector in advocacy, courses for public activists, for educators in
Givat Haviva and at the extension in Sakhnin.
The Institute for Arabic
Alongside these various projects, the Institute for Arabic Studies,
founded in 1963, runs as part of the Jewish-Arab Centre for Peace, with the
goal of teaching students Arab culture and the Arabic language. Thousands of
students have graduated so far from the programmes at the Institute, which is
considered the best school in its field. For over fifty years the Institute has
held a variety of day and night classes for beginners as well as advanced
students, in both the spoken and the classic Arabic language, while studying
and getting to know Arab culture and society. Courses range from weekly
meetings throughout the year to five-month long full-time courses.
The Institute is attended by approximately 30,000 students
participating in the various programmes, of which 60% are Arab and 40% Jewish.
The Institute runs joint programmes for guests from Jewish communities around
the world together with the Arab communities in the area.
In recent years, the Institute has held a unique and intensive
seminar in Arabic for students from abroad, the "Masa" programme.
The Sarah and Yaacov Eshel
The Sarah and Yaacov Eshel Peace Library at Givat Haviva was opened
in 2001. The library brings together three different collections which
scattered around the campus. The library serves a varied audience, from
academic researchers to high school pupils and hobby researchers and other interested
The main collection, founded 50 years ago, contains books and
magazines on a wide variety of subjects, such as education, economics and
business, psychology, sociology, Zionism, Judaism, the history of the Land of
Israel and the State of Israel, socialism, the settlement movements, the
Kibbutz Movement, Hebrew literature and more, and is updated regularly with new
magazines and books as they are published.
A unique branch of the library is the Sauly Marcus Knowledge Centre
Collection, focusing on matters relating to Israeli Arabs, Jewish-Arab
relations, the Jewish-Arab conflict, the Palestinians, the Palestinian
Authority, Arabic language and literature, teaching Arabic, and the Middle East
This collection also includes two unique sub-collections: a central
archive of Palestinian press in the Land of Israel and the State of Israel from
1920 to the present, and a collection of newspaper clippings from the '50s to
the present on the Arab population in the State of Israel, catalogued under 900
categories and sub-categories. In addition, an index of articles in Arab
periodicals is being developed.
The "Moreshet" library is the third collection, focusing
on the holocaust and the Second World War. This extensive collection includes
books, albums, original documents and written testimonials of this key period
in the modern history of the Jewish people and of the holocaust.
The library is home to about 70,000 books and 400 journals, as well
as other materials. Most of the collection is computerised and available for
search and retrieval through an efficient and user-friendly interface. In
addition, the library provides access to online databases.
The library was constructed thanks to the contributions of Marilyn
and Harry Cagin from Cleveland, Ohio, and the Conference on Jewish Material
Claims against Germany.
The Arts Centre, Givat
The Arts Centre acts to combine artistic creation with social
ideological doing, to advance various populations in fields of plastic art and
to provide an advancing studio for artists. The Peace Gallery at the Arts
Centre in Givat Haviva has been active since 1983 and is much appreciated by
many artists applying for exposure through it. The Gallery shows about ten
exhibits every year and holds meetings and workshops:
Aherot" (through other eyes) – weekly meetings for Jewish and Arab
teenagers and for Jewish and Arab women.
workshops hosting some twenty schools from across the country.
workshops for members of Akim and those with Downs Syndrome, attended by some
100 people at each session.
courses at different levels some 90 men and women from across the country.
project for Jewish and Arab youth, as part of Givat
Haviva's community project.
The international department holds seminars in different languages
and workshops on a variety of subjects for international and new immigrant
audiences, where the guests are given a look at the multi-faceted Israeli
society and brought closer to the activity in Givat Haviva. The subjects
discussed contribute to the understanding of the political, social and
financial problems of Israel and the region. These programmes incorporate
fascinating activities with lectures, discussions, films and tours. As part of
the tours of Israel programme, international delegations of students and
professionals visit the place to discuss the current matters faced by Israeli
society. The main topics are co-existence, tolerance, democracy and peace.
The department will be particularly emphasizing the subject of the
kibbutz to those attending in the near future. This is in addition to
familiarisation tours in the area, introductory and background lectures and
first-hand accounts regarding the different subjects discussed at present: the
Jewish-Arab conflict, Israeli society and its complexities, Zionism and
post-Zionism, personal, group and national identity, familiarisation with
research and understanding the holocaust from the Israeli perspective, and
acquaintance with the land, its scenery and its people.