{4F805597-AC32-42F4-9EE2-BAD88CE3B8B2} Partnership and Friendship - Home Hospitality
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Partnership and Friendship - Home Hospitality
By Tova Horowitz, Pardes Hanna-Karkur

A few months ago, I retired from my job as principal of the Alonim Elementary School in Pardes Hanna after two decades of serving there. Announcing my retirement was a sort of closing of a chapter in my life during which I served the education system since 1976. The experience I've gathered in my work in the field of public education I continue to invest in the private education sphere.

As a school principal, I saw children, teachers, parents and the local community – a glimpse into the history of the Jewish People in general and of my locality in particular. I always knew that my actions were a small part of the larger vision: Of a Jewish state and love for our fellow human beings, meant to serve as the platform for our continued existence and unity as a people.

The special responsibility placed on my shoulders as school principal was a source of endless learning about our identity as Jews in the ever-renewing Land of Israel. I came to understand the importance of our connection with Jews in America and discovered the changes and adaptations they underwent as well as the differences between us.

The importance of our existential unity is what drove me to strike up connections, learn and be an active participant in the cause. In the beginning it was the TALI Foundation and Schechter Institute that nourished my faith and identity and through those bodies my first connections were formed.  The appearance of the Partnership 2000 – Iron-Hadera project paved my future path. The Partnership's support, desire, readiness and actions have created breakthroughs that extend beyond our borders and stimulate cooperation and connections with the Partnership communities in the southeast U.S.

Here, mutual activities began between teachers and students from both sides, firstly in small programs followed by the participation of the entire school community. Together we celebrated a Jewish Peoples' Day, shared photographs based on the theme of Judaism and Jewish values via the Jewish Lens program, hosted U.S. teachers in our homes and were hosted by them in return. The mutual relationship grew into a network of friendship, partnership, activity and, primarily, love.

Thus the pillar of our Partnership was formed, with follow-up activity the most natural of outcomes.  I felt a deep sense of belonging and personal partnership in this whole mosaic of work, giving and love that benefits all of us. The endeavor led me to open my home to host my partners in our path—some who had come from far away—for the Decade celebrations. The dinner I hosted in my home, which was attended by members of the local community and members of an incoming American mission, made real for me the vision of mutual concern and involvement of Jews around the world.  Together we enjoyed great conversations, tastes, friendship and experiences. I feel a great sense of esteem, gratitude and happiness that I have been a small part of this large undertaking.

With love and esteem for all our partners,
Tova Horowitz, Pardes Hanna-Karkur

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Friday 25 April, 2014 (c) All rights reserved to the Jewish Agency יום שישי כ"ה ניסן תשע"ד