Our work Our Local Partners Israel, Israel Rugby Overview Israel is a country bountiful in history, beauty and culture. It is also a place where many children grow-up living within a culture of fear of those from other faiths and races. Working closely with Israel Rugby, Atlas is working with young people to change this. Encouraging coexistence within the education system, Israel Rugby and Atlas are presenting rugby and its value to minority children in the system, bringing closer Jewish, Druze and Arab children through national and regional tag rugby tournaments. The rugby values of fierce opposition on the pitch and strong fellowship off the pitch are being utilised to teach the children the importance of co-existence, working closely with them to understand and respect different backgrounds, skills, and cultures. By increasing the children’s capacity to respect and even celebrate difference, Israel Rugby is reducing the impact of religious tensions on the children and enabling them to build a different future for themselves and their communities. Impact The programme is using rugby as a ‘bridge between people’. Within its first year, Israel Rugby reached four cities, 12 schools and 1000 children. Since the establishment of its latest program in 2021, they have held 3 monthly joint activities, with 160 children of different faiths across 8 schools playing together for 2 hours. Long term friendships are being created from consistent and monitored sessions. Funds have recently been allocated to start up the coexistence programme in Haifa and Tel Aviv with success in each region. As the union development committee continue to distribute funds, Israel Rugby and Atlas are on track to have 4-5 coexistence programmes running nationally by 2024.