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Aya and Aya, HIH Alumnae

Meet Aya and Aya, two of our alumnae from the Gesher school. One is Jewish, one is Arab, and both graduated from the Wadi Ara elementary school—with just one year between them. We met with them last week at our annual community activists’ retreat—here’s what they had to say about their experience at Hand in Hand:

“It’s an amazing school, not because you learn to languages, but because you learn to look at someone as a person—not as an Arab, as a Jew, as some other category… You learn to just see the person. I know how to accept that there are other people, and they can think differently from me and talk differently from me, and that’s okay.” —Aya (Left)

“The teachers at Gesher were like a loving family. I could tell them anything and they would listen to me, encourage me, in whichever way I wanted to go. There were two teachers—Ora, who is retired now, and an Arabic teacher named Rania. They were like moms or sisters to me. This school is something special and rare, and it’s something that’s still with me today.” —Aya (Right)

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