The Conference was fun, in that I ran into people who I have known for years. I went to sessions on the economic disparity in Israel which affirmed the fragile situation of Arab Israelis and Haredim (the religious). The focus of this was on education and that the most critical path to decreasing the poverty in the country was through education.
The second session I went to was on Shared Society. What used to be known as co-existence has been reshaped into a discourse on a Shared Society understanding that just co-existing is not really enough, that to really have a strong society there needs to be respectful interaction and joint efforts. I was able to connect with several people on programs that might be of interest to our Grants committee so it was particularly helpful.
While most of the group spent the afternoon packing and shopping, Rick and I joined our buddies Susan and Jordan for a trek to Bethlehem. It was a little hairy going through the checkpoints but once we were through, we felt totally safe and enjoyed viewing the city and environs.