The Jewish Federation of Greater New Haven has partnered with 11 Federations from our region to form SNEC: the Southern New England Consortium. Together we invest in the Afula-Gilboa region of Israel, creating significant impact in the lives of children, women, and young people at risk. The partnership's flagship project, "Young Emissaries", creates a living bridge between our community and Israel and generates countless educational and interpersonal experiences for our community throughout the year. (For more about the Young Emissary program click here

Now you can give to your favorite programs in Afula-Gilboa, Israel

  • Shopping Bag Afula Community Center Sandwich Club

    Underprivileged teenagers needed a neutral place to congregate, play some sports … and they were hungry. Realizing this, a kitchen was set up in the Afula Community Center, in Afula, Israel, where teens could cook their own meals. The hungry teenagers were fed on the condition that, when they finished, they would make 200 sandwich packets to be distributed the next morning to local schools. Each sandwich costs $0.50, and the teens make 1,000 sandwiches every week.

  • Beit Singer Therapeutic Zoo

    The children of Beit Singer, located in the Afula-Gilboa region of Israel, have been taken away from their homes, and some of them were also moved between institutions. They have little trust left for people around them, since they have experienced betrayal and abandonment by them time and again. For these children, a stable animal can be a source of comfort and a transitional-other with whom to practice allowing themselves to love and to trust again.

  • Beit Uri Special Needs Residential Village

    Beit Uri is home to over a hundred children, youth, and adults with special needs and staff of the same number. The green, spacious community houses a school for children aged 6-21; arts and crafts workshops for adult residents; and a café-gallery open to the community. Residents have hearing and visual problems, behavioral disorders, Down Syndrome, autism and other compromised abilities; but they thrive with the education, care giving and myriad activities accessible to them in the village.

  • Emunah Sarah Herzog Children's Center Afula

    The Emunah Sarah Herzog Children's Center located in Afula, is an oasis of caring and stability for some of Israel’s most needy children. The Center provides shelter and therapy for more than 180 children at risk aged 5-18, many of whom may no longer live in homes with their families and instead reside in group housing on the Center’s campus. The Emunah Center’s main goal is to provide a safe and nurturing environment - enabling children to overcome past traumas...


Afula-Gilboa Multi-Cultural Delegation

The Afula-Gilboa region of Israel is unique with 40% of the population Israeli-Arab. In recent years many Ultra-Orthodox families have moved to the region, which resulted in racial tensions among locals. The deligation will share experiences of creating peaceful, shared living communities.

The Afula-Gilboa delegation will present at our hallmark Taste of Honey program, which will feature many Jewish education classes and experiences. 

See event information and RSVP


Meet our guests:

Amir Cahaner (43), Married to Dr. Lee Cahaner, A geographer specializing in the demographics of the Ultra-Orthodox. Father of three boys (14, 9 & 3).  Born and raised in Kibbutz Neve-Eitan, (near the Jordan River) Live in Kfar-Yehezkel, at the foothills of the Gilboa mountains, where his family has a 10,000-acre cattle ranch. Served as a paratrooper and is now a major in reserves. After 25 years of military active duty, still very much a believer in a common future. Holds a degree in Agricultural Engineering and worked for several years in Med-Tech. Today works at SDA, an Israeli company that manufactures and delivers natural dehydrated ingredients – all grown in the fields of Israel – to more than 20 countries around the world, the US is the company’s largest market. Love to travel and hike through the beautiful sites of Israel, and a great fan of modern history. Would not trade living in the Yizrael valley for any other place in the world.

Amani Masalha Zoabi, born in Daburiah, an Arab traditional village next to mount Tabor and now a resident of the  Israeli-Arab village of Tamra in the Gilboa Regional Council. Married and a mother to a boy (5) and a girl (7). In the last 15 years taught children in rehabilitation processes. Studied animal assistance therapy, and worked at Bet Uri (Special needs community in Afula). Participated in the "Olive Tree" art initiative for shared living, and volunteeres at the "Marching Together for a Shared Future" the co-existence NGO in the region.


“Afula is where I go to shop and for services like everyone else.”  “I always wish we could find ways to get closer and live in peace and harmony.”

Ayala Carmi married to Yair and mother to Avigail and Eliya. A therapist and Healthy & Balanced Life consultant. Also a Yoga instructor for women and children. Born in Ramat Tzvi, a Moshav in the regional council of Gilboa, and very active until the age of 25, as a youth counselor. At 25 moved to Tel Aviv, became bat TESHUVA, got married and had a first child.  Came back to the region 2 years ago, now as a "religious" couple in a very "secular" surroundings. There so many challenges living this way, on the one hand, but many wonderful opportunities on the other hand. "We still don’t have an ERUV, but suddenly the synagogue is more active, and 2 or 3 other religious couples moved here as well after we have."

Ravid Pitaro (32) – Head of Delegation

Married to Anna and has two children, Nevo (2) and Daniella (8 month). Afula born and raised. Growing up joined the Scouts and for three out of 8 years was a counselor and head of the counselors in training program. All while volunteering with MDA, as a first responder medic.


A former SNEC Young Emissary at the Jewish Federation of Central Massachusetts Ravid is very familiar with our communities and is a leader among the group’s alumni.


After completing the 1-year of service in New England returned to Israel, joined the Army, and served as a medical team trainer for 2 years.


After the Army and before college, returned to New England (this time with his wife) for a few more months of work in the community.


Went to Medical school in 2009 and currently works as a family physician resident in the partnership area and Ha'emek Medical Center in Afula specifically.


Additionally, a lecturer at Ariel University, a worldwide flying doctor, and continues to volunteer with the medical emergency units in the partnership area.