Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is Hands of Peace, as an organization, all about?

Please review our mission, values, and vision statements here.

Where do most of our Summer Program activities take place?

Our Summer Program activities take place in Glenview, IL and Carlsbad, CA.

I have some understanding of what’s happened and happening in Israel/Palestine, but in many ways I feel I have so much to learn. Do I have to know a lot about Israel/Palestine in order to participate?

Though beneficial, pre-existing knowledge of or a personal relationship to Israel/Palestine is not necessary, as we run education sessions prior to the Summer Program.

What do we look for in an applicant?

  • A love of learning about and understanding the world
  • Desire to make the world a better place
  • Interest in leadership and activism
  • Current freshman, sophomore, or junior in high school (Exceptions have been made for seniors.)

If my family hosts another participant, or my neighbor and I are both accepted, can I drive us both to the program each day?

No. You may drive yourself alone, but anyone transporting another participant must be over age 21. We do arrange carpool groups to decrease the burden of dropping off and picking up each day.

Does my family have to host a participant from Israel/Palestine in order for me to participate?

Although it is not mandatory to host a participant, it is definitely encouraged as it enhances the program experience. However, if hosting is not an option, we still encourage you to apply! Your family can also still host if you aren’t able to participate but would still like to be involved. Please find our Host Family Application here.

I live in the Chicago/San Diego area, but far from Glenview/Carlsbad – commuting could be possible, but would be time consuming and exhausting for me/my parents. Could I be hosted by a family that lives closer to Glenview/Carlsbad?

Absolutely! Please just let us know this at the interview.

I don’t live in Illinois or California, but could arrange to be in Chicago/San Diego for the dates of the program. Am I eligible to apply and participate? To be hosted by a local family?

Yes, you are welcome to apply! If accepted, please know you are responsible for paying your own airfare and that we will arrange a host family for you if necessary.

Can I participate and still go to band/football/volleyball practice for 10 hours a week?

No.  Click here to see last summer’s calendar for participants. The Summer Program schedule is all-encompassing for those three weeks – and is 8:30am to 5:30pm every day July 10 – 29, 2019, with only two non-consecutive days off, including a half dozen evening events. We unfortunately cannot accommodate participants missing program activities. Please contact Chicago Site Director Darling Kittoe at or San Diego Site Director Sarah Heirendt at with any unique extenuating circumstances.

Hands of Peace sounds like a great fit for me, but I can’t participate in the Summer Program due to scheduling conflicts. How can I still get involved?

– Like us on Facebook and sign up for our emails to stay updated

– Attend monthly HOPEducation events in Chicago or San Diego