For several years the Weinberg Foundation has been privileged to bring prominent community and government leaders, primarily from Maryland, to visit Israel.
While the Jewish community of Baltimore sponsored this trip since 1981, the Foundation began funding the mission in 2001, and has been solely running and leading the trip since 2007. The goal has been to provide a rare opportunity to witness, first-hand, how individuals have overcome adversity, organized themselves, and thrived with dignity in such a complicated region of the world. The objective of this educational trip is to present Israel to the trip participants so that they can better understand and interpret the complex realities of the Middle East.
The Mission has been specifically designed for leaders who are eager to participate in an intense educational orientation of Israel. In addition to visiting religious and historical sites, participants have the opportunity to meet with major Israeli political and community representatives, including some social-service agencies which also reflect the Foundation’s grantmaking in Israel, roughly $8 million to $10 million annually.
After building relationships with Mission participants for several years, in 2008 the Foundation launched the Alumni Scholars Program. The program includes annual events with keynote speakers covering current issues in Israel and throughout the Middle East as well as book mailings, an alumni directory, and reunion dinners. In 2011, for the first time, the Foundation hosted a Mission Alumni reunion trip. Twenty-nine past participants, at their own expense, experienced Israel anew. Nearly 600 Israel Mission Alumni now remain connected with the Foundation, as well as each other. This network of meaningful, lasting relationships has produced tangible benefits for the community at-large in the form of partnerships and initiatives rooted in their shared experiences in Israel.
Here are some scenes from a few of our recent missions:
Are you an Israel Mission Alumni? Click here for information exclusively for past Mission participants including the Weinberg Foundation's Alumni Scholars Program and more photos of specific Mission trips.