Meet our middle east alumni who will be speaking at the benefit

Join us to learn about how Hands of Peace has impacted the trajectory of their lives and the impact they have on their communities!

Mohammed

Mohammed is an engineering graduate from An-Najah National University in Nablus. He participated in Hands of Peace in 2011 and again in 2012 as an XL. In 2017 Mohammed returned to Chicago as the Palestinian chaperone to spread the knowledge and the experience that he gained during his Hands of Peace years to the next generation.  

Mohammed has worked with multiple peace organizations and was the one of the first Palestinians asked to join a Model United Nations at Tel Aviv University. In 2016, he was invited to participate in the Youth Peace Initiative in the Netherlands, which was a peace conference aimed at drafting a solution to the conflict in Israel and Palestine.  Currently he is looking forward to getting accepted into a Master's Program based on Peace and Conflict resolution in Finland.  

In 2016 Mohammed was awarded with the Hands of Peace Rooftop Consciousness award and in 2018 he was privileged again to get the Don and Ellen Clark Scholarship. Both of these awards are presented to outstanding alumni who demonstrate a commitment to the goals and ideals of the Hands of Peace program. He is the only alumni to receive both awards.  

Mohammed believes that being a chaperone for Hands of Peace is his way of “paying it forward.” He may not “change the world, but to make a difference for the next generation to come is a start.” 

Maor

Maor started his journey with Hands of Peace 12 years ago in Chicago, as a 2006 participant, and has continued his engagement throughout the years. In 2018 he returned to Chicago as a chaperone during the Summer Program. 

He is the founder of Tribe Advertising, an Israeli startup, building the first automated digital agencies for small businesses. Participating in Hands of Peace seminars and summer programs reenergizes Maor and reminds him to focus on what is really important – the situation that surrounds him in Israel/Palestine. He believes that “you cannot be an Israeli or a Palestinian without living the situation, whether you are involved or not involved. Once you know, you cannot ignore.”  

Besides working around the clock for his own company, he volunteers on a regular basis at an Arabic employment center in Israel, helping with job training techniques, hoping to “break societal patterns.”