Photo by Shulamit Seidler-Feller

Immersive Education

Encounter offers a range of immersive experiences in the West Bank for Jewish leaders and influencers. For Emerging Leaders, we offer an introductory trip to Bethlehem and surrounding areas. For senior Jewish Leaders, we offer our executive level Intensive Leadership Seminars, which include pre- and post-travel programming as well as a four-day travel component in Bethlehem and surrounding areas, East Jerusalem, and Ramallah.

Under certain circumstances, Encounter offers customizable one- and two-day experiences for Jewish groups visiting the region and seeking to incorporate and Encounter experience into their trip. Preference is given to organizations and congregations led by Encounter’s past participants. We offer private trips for supporters of $1800+, in order to retain our rigorous focus on our core programs and as a means of subsidizing them.

Photo by Shulamit Seidler-Feller

Emerging Leaders

Encounter invites outstanding emerging Jewish professionals and lay leaders to apply for our Emerging Leaders Intensive Seminar. Members of the Emerging Leaders Intensive Seminar are future professional and/or lay leaders in Jewish communal life and are committed to pursuing high-level leadership and a leadership pathway that is bridge-building and constructive in an era of high political polarization. The Seminar includes a four-day delegation to the region with focused travel in Palestinian communities in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

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Executive Leaders

Our Intensive Leadership Seminars are by-invitation-only programs designed for high-level Jewish communal leaders. Each Seminar cohort is comprised of leading Jewish professionals in their various fields and select lay leaders committed to a more nuanced, informed and constructive engagement with Israel and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Seminars include a four-day delegation to the region with focused travel in Palestinian communities in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

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Photo by Shulamit Seidler-Feller

Custom Programs

Are you directing or partic­i­pating in a mission of Jewish leaders to Israel and inter­ested in offering your group an unpar­al­leled and powerful oppor­tu­nity for connecting to Palestinian life?
Encounter offers a number of custom experiences each year for groups of high-level Jewish lay and profes­sional leaders, dependent on capacity given our scheduled core programs.

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I thought I had a solid command on so many facts and figures and data points and narratives. This trip gave me more facts, data points and anecdotes and voices that offer different narratives… Being present for that testimony was a gift. Rabbi David Seth Kirshner Rabbi, Temple Emanu-El, Closter, New Jersey
The trip forever colors your understanding of the security of Israel… It deepens your knowledge and exposure no matter how much you've read. Angie Atkins Director of Heritage Alumni, Wexner Foundation
The Encounter experience was such a powerful reminder of the importance of face-to-face interaction. After listening to and learning from actual Palestinian human beings, it’s impossible to revert to grand pronouncements about ‘the Palestinians’ as an undifferentiated, homogenous collective: They’re just as complex, multi-dimensional, thoughtful, and fallible as the rest of us. What a gift to be reminded of that elusive truth in this era of insidious generalizations. Aaron Dorfman President, Lippman Kanfer Foundation for Living Torah
Encounter gave me access to neighborhoods and people which were otherwise off limits. I was able to see and hear things firsthand that I would not have experienced otherwise. Miriam Heller Stern Director, School of Education, Jewish Institute of Religion, Hebrew Union College
This is an intense trip that quickly immerses you in narratives of Palestinians that are mostly hidden to Jews living in Israel. You will have access to unvarnished insights that will deepen your understanding of the Palestinian narrative and broaden your understanding of the conflict. You will have the chance to ask hard questions and to struggle deeply with colleagues about the challenges you witness. All of this in a deeply supportive environment. Rabbi Elliott Tepperman Rabbi, Bnai Keshet, New Jersey