TEENS. FOR PEACE.
Teens For Peace in the Middle East was built on a vision for a platform where teens can interact across borders to productively discuss the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
War and conflict cause humans to have a set mindset by the time they enter adulthood, specifically in hatred toward others and the unknown. Our project works to interview Israeli and Palestinian teens about their experiences with the conflict, and how it has impacted their past as well as how it will impact their future--giving teens from around the world the opportunity to learn about the conflict from the perspective of someone their age. Through partnerships, professional research, events, panels, and our podcast, Teens for Peace strives to create a more peaceful future by cultivating meaningful change. We are a network of politically involved students crossing borders and on several continents, working to fix our world through understanding and empathy.
New and wondering who we are? Read Founder and President Max Hyman's recently published article on the value of youth voices in the Christian Science Monitor here.
A Conversation with Jonathan Kessler.
On March 12, TPME founder sat down with Jonathan Kessler, an industry expert with a plethora of experience in Middle East peacebuilding. For 18 years, he was a member of AIPAC’s senior staff, and he previously served as executive director of the Center for Middle East Peace, executive editor of Middle East Insight magazine, and president of a consulting firm specializing in Middle East public diplomacy. In these positions, he met with the leaders of Israel, Palestine, Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and the UAE. Jonathan has appeared as an analyst for MSNBC, CNN, C-SPAN, and Voice of America, and served on the Executive Board of Seeds of Peace, the Board of Directors of MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger, and the Board of Trustees of PANIM: Institute for Jewish Leadership and Values. He has spoken before audiences in all 50 states, England and Australia, and has led numerous missions to Israel and the Arab world. Check out our conversation below.
What have we been up to? Listen in!
The Teens for Peace Podcast seeks to explore potential improvements to peacebuilding in youth by analyzing the results of our 32+ interview series of Israeli and Palestinian teens over several years. Each episode discusses a specific question posed in all interviews, drawing patterns and conclusions from the various, often emotional and provoking, responses. We've received listenership from across the world and are excited to share our message of youth-driven peace. Episodes 1-8 have been released and 9 is currently in development.
TPME 2023 Project Updates
April 15, 2022
Teens for Peace is thrilled to announce our upcoming appearance in "Peace in Action."
In late spring 2023, we'll be featured in the upcoming picture book from internationally renown peacebuilders Helen Maffini & Whitney Stuart. This project exposes young peacemakers ages 9-12 to peace activists who overcame an obstacle to find internal and share external peace. Our founder Max Hyman is humbled to be among dozens of Nobel Laureates in this cooperative project, including the Dalai Lama and other respected leaders. More information will be released soon!
Recent TPME Updates:
An aspiring Jewish ethics professor, an aspiring Israeli diplomat, an aspiring politician, an aspiring cross-society educator, an aspiring Palestinian psychologist, and an aspiring Arabic student sat down together on October 30th. What do they have in common? They're all Teens for Peace interviewee alumni. Watch founder Max Hyman's illuminating conversation with alumni Itai, Yaniv, Amir, Marsel, Shai, and Liran about changes in their perspectives over the past three years.
Teens for Peace in the Middle East is transforming. Currently, we're gathering focus groups of various ages of Israeli and Palestinian teenagers and using gathered information to prepare a research report. Through various channels and by partnering with peacebuilding organizations in the region, TPME is committed to creating tangible and factual information about peacebuilding in youth. We're also expanding our reach to more teens, and increasing our plurality. Read more about our efforts below.
WHO WE ARE
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has caused suffering, tension, and violence for millions over the span of 9 decades. Peace seems far off, and our goal is to understand why the situation has grown so hostile and how we can play a part in fixing the world through connecting teens from Israel/Palestine to teens around the world. Through debate, asking, answering, interviews, research, education, and social media, we look to understand the past and present of the issue, and work towards a brighter future. The ultimate goal of our organization is to create a teenage generation passionate about creating solutions for peace based around the truths of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
WHAT DO WE DO?
How do we reach and educate passionate teens?
WE TELL STORIES.
Below, you can find quotes of some of our most powerful stories, taken from a variety of interviewees from diverse backgrounds. While quotes can't do an entire story justice (head over to our interviews page for that), we can learn quite a bit from a teen in just a few words. These stories are why we do what we do, and have inspired us to work towards a more peaceful and just world among young people in the Middle East.
“We hear the siren starting, and then literally 5 seconds later, we just hear the loudest sounds of our lives. We hear the glass of the window shatter...we look outside and everything is just on fire. There’s a massive hole in the ground...everyone’s screaming and shouting. There’s a little metal ball, my mom still has it, from the rocket, that landed on her bed.”
Liran - Israeli (18)
Engage with us.
We want to create a well-informed teenage generation aware of the life-changing conflict in the Middle East. We don't want to overwhelm you, so head over to the education page here or read our old blog posts for some background. Read about some solutions on the table. Then, if you're interested, check out some of our narratives and interviews or participate in one of our ongoing research projects.