Every year we recite “Next Year in Jerusalem,” – an aspiration for the city itself and its future. Jerusalem means “City of Peace” and it has two dimensions: one earthly and present, and one heavenly, the Jerusalem that we strive to build.
Our Jerusalem Renewal funding strategy is dedicated to aligning the Jerusalem we know with the one we hope for. We believe that Jerusalem is not just a microcosm for Israeli society, but for the world’s. To us, its intensity and diversity, instead of being weaknesses, are its strongest assets. We see this through the grassroots activists and organizations that are bridging the social and economic gaps in Jerusalem, as well as shortening the gap between the two Jerusalems. You can read more about our Jerusalem Renewal Strategy here.
Check out some of the organizations we support through our strategy below
Through New Spirit, Jerusalem’s young adults promote a creative economy that fosters entrepreneurship and business innovation. It provides a physical space for professionals, artists and designers to gather, network and collaborate, while also connecting individuals and groups with the city’s public and private sectors. Since its start in 2003, New Spirit has engaged more than 100,000 people from East and West Jerusalem through cultural events, social projects, a robust accelerator program, its Restreet co-working spaces and an artist network at its Alliance House.
Take a peek at their new Restreet space in their video below!
Established in 2009, Muslala Artists Collective is a community of creatives who believe that art and creativity can bring about sustainable change. They activate underutilized public spaces, particularly in Jerusalem’s city center with accessible art pieces, like a meditation dome and storytelling stairs, to increase openness and the use of the spaces. Much of their activity takes place at The Terrace on the rooftop of their building, where they are creating an “Urban Rooftop Oasis,” a platform for community engagement through urban nature, farming, creative workshops, educational opportunities and a meeting place for various groups.
See a video about their Terrace below!
c.a.t.a.m.o.n Dance Group focuses on visual communication, particularly through the body to bridge cultures and ideas in Jerusalem and beyond. One of c.a.t.a.m.o.n’s signature project is “From Jaffa to Agripas” festival,” which features choreographers and dancers from across Israel for three days of performances – in Mahane Yehuda – the market in Jerusalem’s city center – and brings together 2,000 viewers from around Israel.
See the trailer for “From Jaffa to Agripas” below!
How are we putting this theme into practice?
With several other funders, we also support a network called the Jerusalem Model, which brings together the young social entrepreneurs who are working toward a better future for Jerusalem’s diverse people. This coalition of changemaking Jerusalemites – Ultra-Orthodox, secular Jews, Palestinian Muslims and Christians, Ethiopian Israelis, LGBTQ-identifying people, and more – convene from all parts of the city for programs like conferences, professional development activities and social events. The Jerusalem Model operates to build resilience in the city’s civil society, among leaders from grassroots influencers to municipality decision makers.