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The Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Ethics has adopted the award winning documentary Encounter Point as the keystone of its 2008 Middle East peace education project.
Thanks to a generous grant from a community supporter, The Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Ethics has recently purchased 200 copies Encounter Point produced by Just Vision. In the film, director Ronit Avni introduces us to dozens of everyday heroes, courageous Israelis and Palestinians working together to make co-existence and reconciliation a reality.
Accompanying the film are well researched, highly structured Community and Classroom Screening Guides with lesson plans designed to underscore the efficacy of nonviolent communication which is at the heart of Encounter Point. The Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Ethics is first in the nation to work with the film and its adjunct curriculum on a city-wide scale. The project entails screening the thought provoking film for spiritual leaders, religious school directors, community activists and educators to show how the healing power of cooperation is indeed possible even in the face of the most tragic personal losses. After viewing the film audiences are inspired by the merit of its message, which is to embrace the preservation of human dignity. It is our goal to assist community leaders in obtaining the film for educational use and to facilitate the implementation of the Encounter Point curriculum into classrooms and civic spaces throughout Southern California. More information about Encounter Point including links to the screening guides for download, can be found at: www.encounterpoint.com.
Encounter Point was first screened for community leaders and activists at Santa Monica City College on November 18, 2007 with over 125 in the audience from UCLA, HUC, Brit Tzedek'v Shalom, Leo Baeck Temple, Malibu Synagogue, Stephen S.Wise Temple, members of the Muslim Public Affairs Council and the Topanga Peace Alliance and others. Many more screenings will be held over the coming year here in the Los Angeles area. Please contact Rebecca Tobias if you would like to arrange a screening for your classroom or community organization.
Around the world, Encounter Point is inspiring audiences to look beyond the mainstream media's portrayal of violence and militancy and inviting us to witness first-hand the untold stories of ordinary people working to build peace from the ground up, circumstance by circumstance.
Southern California audiences will also be given the opportunity to participate in a Wallenberg hosted interfaith dialog web project. The central theme of that dialog will be, "What is the true meaning of the Holy Land to those of your Faith?" As the project evolves and grows, we hope to begin to invite and include others who are screening the film across the globe to introduce and encourage audiences to take part in the on-going online Wallenberg Middle East Peace Dialog. In this way we can build an inter-cultural global interfaith network around the concept of nonviolence and nonviolent resistance using Encounter Point as a catalyst.
Please join us in encouraging the life affirming efforts of those working diligently to foster a just peace in the middle east. Beyond today's seemingly insurmountable conflicts lies a future alive with promise.
Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Ethics
(Middle East Peace Logo thanks to Sandy Chaves.)