I first learned about the Arava Institute when I attended a talk by Rabbi Michael Cohen. I was immediately drawn to the Institute's vision and impressed with the work that that its students and members are doing to address environmental concerns in the region. But what is even more inspiring is Arava's commitment to bringing Palestinian, Jordanian, and Jewish students together to work on common problems. Here's to clean water for all!
I can not recall how I learned about the Arava Institute, but since the moment I heard about it, I knew I wanted to be part of it in one way or another. The idea of such an institution, devoted to environmental studies, existing in Israel is an achievement in itself. However, above all, I applaud the institution for the way in which they carry out their mission that "nature knows no boarders". Having the heads of the institution, the staff and the students be Israelis, Jordanians and Palestinians warms my heart. Coming together to work for a common goal is the way to go to bring the two nations closer to each other. This is holly work in so many levels.
When peace finally comes to the Israelis and Palestinians, it will be because of the unrelenting efforts of institutions like the Arava Institute. And the people responsible for fueling the energy and passion of the folks who run the institution are the dedicated members of the Friends Of The Arava Institute. They quietly and tirelessly work to make sure the visions of the leaders and students at the Institute have what they need to realize the dreams and goals so needed by the region and the world. The Institute not only works for and teaches peace, but also is dedicated to sustaining our environment locally, regionally, and globally. The Friends of The Arava institute rate a triple “A” PLUS in my book.
I have followed Arava through our connection with Rabbi Michael Cohen. It is one of the most impressive ventures in Israel, combining a love of the land and a love of peace, with the prayer that Arabs and Jews can live together in the land in harmony.
I've known of the Arava Institute's work for several years and it is the only organization that truly understands that environmental issues are not defined by maps or borders. Only by working together on a practical level, through EDUCATION, can Israelis and Palestinians work towards resolving environmental issues AND political issues. The many students I've met have been stellar and I applaud and support the work of the Arava Institute.
The efforts of the Arava Institute are inspiring! Methuselah is one of the most interesting projects in which they are involved (although likely not the most important). Nevertheless, the idea of restoring an ancient fruit is amazing.
Friends of the Arava Institute supports an incredibly visionary endeavor. Environmental research and education is needed everywhere, but perhaps noplace more than in the Middle East, where contention over scarce resources exacerbates all other regional tensions. On my visit to Israel several years ago, I participated in a hike/study session led by an Arava Institute educator, who integrated scientific insight, spiritual inspiration, and experiential education in a moving and effective way. I have followed their work, and support it, since that time, and have only grown more impressed with their international focus and their desire and ability to create dialogue and cooperation on important issues across national and ethnic borders. Highly recommended!
The strongest learning for me was the to understand the extraordinary hurdles that the participants had to clear to pusue their ideals. With the threat of isolation from their own families and friends they pursued the participation in the programme. This gives me hope in the uture for the region. this programme is fostering the foundations of the stability in the region. The fabric of the leaders of the future is being interwoven. There is clarity that more will be achieved through cooperation and mutual respect in this complex political and enirnmental regional crossroads.
I was a student at the Arava Institute in the Spring of 2003 and Fall of 2004. It was a life changining experience that truely affected my life, and still does, on so many different levels. I have many friends from various backgrounds that I will have never considered possible before. The Arava Institute did not only help on a personal level, they also provided me with all the help possible to continue my graduate studies, and used all their resouces to help provide me with the best experience, and a well-rounded interaciton. It is a great place to grow to be a human and to get in touch with life.
What a great way to break down cultural and religious barriers in the Middle East and benefit the environment at the same time. The Arava is unique in its mission and methods.