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Teaching little hearts to care

ICEJ invests in the new generation

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8 Apr 2013 (All day)
Teaching little hearts to care

How young is too young? When it comes to teaching children to love and accept one another, there is no such thing as ‘too young’! Such is the work of “Little Hearts”, a unique pre-school program in Jerusalem supported by the Christian Embassy, where several staff families also send their youngest children.

Jerusalem is a mosaic of diverse communities that often tend to keep to themselves. But at Little Hearts, this rich diversity easily blends together as Jewish, Arab and foreign children between the ages of two and six years old mingle daily in a warm, cheerful setting.

The children at Little Hearts are learning reconciliation and cultural understanding at tender young ages. Many have just started walking and talking. They have a lot of fun together even though they cannot all speak the same language. With all the creative and educational activities at Little Hearts, there is no time to learn prejudices against other children who are different.

The teachers at Little Hearts reflect the same broad array of backgrounds. The youngest class is taught by an Israeli Jew and an Arab Christian. Children up to five years old have a teacher who made aliyah from Germany several decades ago. The oldest group is cared for by an Italian-Jewish lady.

Yet what makes it most unique is that the daycare center was founded by a former hardened PLO commando who today is an evangelical Christian Arab at peace with his Jewish neighbors.

Born into a Palestinian refugee family in Gaza, Tass Abu Saada moved in Jordan and became a trained PLO militiaman. Yet while later living in America, he came to faith in Jesus and went through a long process of healing, reconciliation and forgiveness, all recounted in his book “Once an Arafat Man”.


Today, Taas and his wife Karen seek to bring that healing to the younger generations in the Holy Land. Through their ministry “Seeds of Hope”, the couple first started a daycare center and kindergarten in Jericho. Then last year, they opened the Little Hearts preschool in Jerusalem in an effort to bridge the gap between Palestinians and Israelis, beginning early in life.

“We recognised that the way to provide a better future for the people of the land is to instil hope into their communities,” explained Abu Saada.

The ICEJ has been supporting this unique kindergarten in various ways. For instance, we have purchased furniture, art supplies and music materials for the children. Also, a scholarship was provided to a family in need that wanted their child to grow up in this welcoming environment. As the school expands, more scholarships will be needed.

So please help us to offer more scholarships for the school and to meet its financial challenges. Give today to ICEJ AID


 
For a special commentary on the importance of giving our children a Biblical education,
CLICK HERE!

 

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