The German-Israeli Youth Congress 2015 was the central event of the German Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Germany and Israel. The anniversary also marked 60 years of German-Israeli encounters in youth exchange. The youth congress was realized by ConAct – Coordination Center German-Israeli Youth Exchange in cooperation with the Israel Youth Exchange Authority. It took place from May 8 to 12 in Berlin/Germany and November 16 to 20 in Neve Ilan/Israel.
The year 2015 marked the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Israel and Germany. A dense network of cooperation and friendships has grown between individuals, nongovernmental organizations and official institutions of both countries – the bonds are strong and meaningful to both sides. One of the liveliest is the youth exchange: For about 60 years young people from both countries get together within the context of youth exchange and volunteer services – more than 600,000 youngsters have taken part in these programs.
On the occasion of the anniversary year 2015 about 300 young people from both countries with former experience and present involvement in German-Israeli exchange projects and volunteer services got together in order to discuss experiences, successes and challenges of Israeli-German encounters in the past, present and future. The panels, discussion forums and workshops revolved around the participants’ experiences as well as the different realities of young people in Germany and Israel. A comparative approach on the two civil societies raised issues of social and political life, civic participation and coexistence in multi-ethnic and multi-religious societies. Finally, visions were developed how those future societies of Germany and Israel can be shaped taking into account different realities and one’s own and yet common history.
Find the complete programs of our congress here:
PART 1, May 8 to 12, 2015 in Berlin/Germany
PART 2, November 16 to 20, 2015 in Neve Ilan/Israel