Electronic newsletter no' 6

Dear Friends of Tiberias,

As we continue the extensive development work and activities, once again we invite you to share our lives with you all. In this issue you will find details and information on several important topics such as events, culture, education, foreign affairs, sports and more. We hope you share our notion of satisfaction and enthusiasm as we watch the city and the residents enjoy the rich life Tiberias has to offer.

With best regards and greetings for a Happy Hannuka, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year,

Zohar Oved,

Mayor of Tiberias

Dear Friends and Supporters,

The year 2007 has been full of events and challenges. We are enthusiastic to continue 2008 with development projects and activities. This past year, we brought to you all the interesting and important events in Tiberias and received many comments and observations. Together we upgraded the Foreign Affairs web site and completed the production of a colorful brochure representing Tiberias in English and French which will be distribute in the following weeks.

Some of the exciting achievements we are proud to report are the rehabilitation of the tourism infrastructure following the war of Summer 2006, renovation of schools and improving of the public shelters and security. We strengthened relations with our twin cities abroad and forged new ties in China and France, promoted new community and voluntary projects for the benefit of the community. Worth noting is the advancement in the sport of rowing on the national and international level as well as achievements in Tennis, Basketball, Soccer.

We are currently witnessing the American efforts for reconciliation and peace talks between Israel, the Palestinians and the Arab world. I believe this shows the understanding of all parties of the importance of this process for the development of the nations of the region and the significance they attach to economic prosperity and personal security for the benefit of future generations.

Together with the volunteers of the Foreign Affairs office, we are working to strengthen our ties with the communities and the cities in Israel and our many friends abroad. These are our ambassadors sharing our moments of joy and distress. By sharing our lives we are inviting you to take part and help our empowerment and strengthen the state of Israel, the only safe homeland of the Jewish people. As the new year begins, together we will begin the celebrations of 60 years of Israeli independence.
I wish you all prosperity and development, good health and security and peace.


Eitan Oved,
Head of Foreign Affairs and Security
Tiberias Municipality


Dahka Circus in Tiberias:
The events department in collaboration with the "Acco Theater Center" produced a colorful circus performance open to the public on Oct. 11. The show took place at the archeological Park with circus performers from across the globe: Israel, Ireland, Switzerland, Bulgaria, USA and France. The public was also invited to take part in various workshops to learn a little bit of the magic of the art of the circus.

The 12th Annual Memorial Ceremony for Yitzhak Rabin:
The annual ceremony commemorating the assassination of Prime Minister Rabin took place Nov. 4th at Yad Labanim Hall. A moving film of the life of PM Rabin "1922-1995" was shown and at the conclusion of the ceremony, a new sculpture by artist Shlomo Simoni of Rabin was revealed.


Books for the community:
The Ketter publishing company in conjunction with the local HOT TV station offered a unique book fair on Oct. 17 in Yad Shitrit cultural center. The fair offered and displayed a vast variety of books to the public for purchase at 1$ each book. Hundreds of Tiberias residents flocked to the fair. The proceeds will be used for the benefit of the development and improvement of the children's section at the local municipal public library.

Wuppertal Choir performance:
Oct. 18. As part of the warming relationship between the Tiberias community and the Jewish community of Wuppertal in Germany, the Wuppertal Jewish choir gave a memorable performance to a packed audience in the local WIZO music hall. The choir sang a variety of tunes and songs in Hebrew and Yiddish, leaving the crowd applauding in excitement. The choir members were greeted by the representative on behals of the Mayor who awarded them with the city flag.

Tuesdays of Culture:
A new tradition, a cultural initiative produced by the department of Culture begun Oct. 23. This is a joint venture of the Municipal library, the WIZO music school and the Theatre school of Yad Shitrit. Every Tuesday the public is invited to participate and enjoy performances by local artists and groups at Yad Shitrit cultural center including street performances, music, children's plays and more.


Mothers' Camp:
The Social Services department offered a unique 4 day experiential camp for mothers of children with learning disabilities. 17 mothers participated in the activity beginning October 14, offering a variety of lectures, workshops in numerology, Thai massage, psychodrama and challenge activities at the Yarden Park. An emphasis was put on empowering the participants and broadening their abilities to cope with the challenges of raising their special children.

The Night Owls Program in Tiberias:
Beginning November, as part of the comprehensive program dealing with offering activities for youth at after school hours until night, the municipal Youth department has begun operating various classes and activities including Karaoke, juggling, arts and crafts, soccer matches and trainings and a mobile coffee shop roaming the city at different locations from 9:00 p.m. until 1:00 a.m. every night. In addition, a parent volunteering patrol unit has begun touring the streets during the hours of the night with the purpose of watching and preventing undesirable activities by youth and improved involvement and understanding of the adults for the youth culture and behavior.

"Good Start" early childhood program:
November. As part of the national "Schmidt Plan" for treatment of at-risk youth and children, a "Good Start" headquarters will begin operating for the provision of services for families and children at risk. The program aims at reducing risk factors in the life of the younger children (0-6) through an individual treatment and plan tailored for each child. The "Good Start" program staff will coordinate all the different public entities dealing and serving early childhood in the city in order to improve the outreach to the target population.

Senior Citizen's month in November:
The week of Nov. 18 marked the concluding activities of the Senior citizen's month. The Social services department produced various activities and events that included: fun days for seniors at the Caesar's Hotel in Tiberias, sporting events for seniors, screening of films, hikes and tours of the area, crisis workshops and more. Other partner organizations involved were: Israel Joint, the Senior Citizens Association, Amcha association, the National Insurance organization and the MATAV company. The closing event included a lecture by Dr. Dina Eizen dealing with the healing qualities of humor, a folk dancing and sing-a-long session. Mayor Oved, revealed the upcoming plans for the senior population, in particular a new blueprint of services for the elderly.

The community marks the international day for prevention of domestic violence:
Nov. 25. The artist Michal Shir, who personally battled and won domestic violence, performed in an unforgettable performance called "Into freedom" revealing her personal journey from the crewel cycle of domestic violence. The play, written and composed by Ms. Shir, told her story while sending a message of empowerment and hope to all those women experiencing violence in their lives. The evening was the initiative of the Tiberias Women's Forum and included a lecture on the various ways of dealing with domestic violence. The Tiberias Women's Forum comprises of over 20 volunteer women, residents of Tiberias, who are active in the community, promoting women's issues and participation.


True diversity in youth leadership:
October 29. For the first time ever in Israel and Tiberias in particular, a student of Bedouin-Arab descent has been chose to head the student council of a school. 14 year old Shari Suaed was elected by her Ort-Tiberias middle school peers to head the student council. Shari expressed her enthusiasm and feeling of responsibility for the position, especially since she is a proud Bedouin. Shari said she was brought up to see each individual as equal and therefore not surprised for being elected. Her future plans are to serve in the Israeli military and study medicine.

The national teacher's strike – dealing with the consequences in Tiberias:
The strike of the national teacher's union which began in October has continued leaving hundreds of high school students at home. The department of Education devised an alternative plan for keeping the students occupied by establishing a strike administration, providing activities of various sorts for the youth. In collaboration with the Afik College, students are offered special enrichment classes at after school hours for approximately 650 children in areas of: theory studies for driving lessons, verbal cognition, youth leadership, computer skills, health, communications, English and more.


Unemployment figures in Tiberias are down:
September statistics show a drastic decrease in unemployment figures as published by the national Employment Service. Figures are down by 17.7%. Unemployment rates in Tiberias are now at 5.5%.


Beautiful City:
For the second year in a row, Tiberias keeps the 5 star title of beauty in the national contest "Beatiful City – Beatiful Israel" administered by the Ministry of Interior and the Local Government Authority.

Foreign Affairs:

Enghein Le-Bain, France:
Oct. 25. Following the visit of the Tiberias delegation to France in June, lead by Mayor Oved and Councilman Head of Foreign Affairs Eitan Oved, and new connection was made with Enghein Le-Bain and the Bnei-Brith chapter. A return delegation from Enghein visited Tiberias. The parties agreed to further promote cooperation, especially in regards to the establishment of the Technology Incubator in Tiberias and ties between the rowing clubs of each town. The city of Enghein is located close to Paris and is well known for its hot springs and Casino district. In the photo, Chairman of the Enghein Nautical club Mr. Andre Suchet II receiving the Tiberias gifts.

Official signing of Twin City agreement between Wuxi and Tiberias:
October 29. A Tiberias delegation, lead by Mayor Zohar Oved and Counciman Eitan Oved, arrived in Wuxi to attend the International Twin City conference and for the official signing of the agreement between the two cities. Following a long process initiated by Israeli General Consul in Shanghai, Uri Gutman, the agreement was signed by the mayors and in front of an audience of over 200 guests attending the international conference from the USA, Germany, France, England, Denmark, Belgium, Japan, Mexico, Brazil, Greece, the Philippines and more. In addition, the delegation spent efforts in meeting with various representatives of international business groups represented in Wuxi for the purpose of initiating different collaborative efforts in areas of medicine, technology, education and academy.

Joan Krohn of Tiberias honorary winner at international photo competition:
As part of the twin-city partnership with Tulsa Oklahoma, several Tiberias photographers participated in the annual photo contest administered by the Tulsa Global Alliance (TGA) for all its twin cities. This year the contest focused on "Seasons around the world". Joan Krohn of Tiberias won an honorary prize for her photo "the whispering wind" depicting a summer sunset over mount Arbel and will have her photo displayed in the calendar produced of the winning photos.


Making international rowing headlines:
The October issue of the FOAR Rowers electronic magazine, the official magazine of the Masters Rowing Association, dedicated a cover story to Tiberias residents and councilman Eitan Oved. The title of the story: "Israel's Elder Oarsman" tells his impressive involvement in rowing in Tiberias, since he was 13 years old and goes on to describe his work in advancing Rowing in Tiberias and in Israel at large. Also covered, Mr. Oved's accident and loss of his leg which he overcame with the help of the skills rowing taught him through the years.

Rowing for success:
The Tiberias rowing club participated (Oct. 19-21) in the new coastal rowing world championship that took place in Canne at the French Riviera. The Tiberias rowers, lead by Coach Genadi Sapognikov qualified for the finals with 20 of the world's leading teams. Two weeks earlier, Oct 4-6, the Tiberias team won the Israeli rowing championship once again and achieved the international criteria set by FISA (The International Rowing Association).

The Love Journey begins in Tiberias:
This 5 day bike journey began October 28 with the purpose of raising 3 million dollars by 470 bikers from over 13 countries for the benefit of the Alin Children's hospital in Jerusalem.


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