UK Task Force on issues relating to Arab citizens of Israel

Pears Foundation has provided crucial support to the UK Task Force. In addition to co-founding and co-chairing our organisation, it has provided invaluable financial support and investment as our key fiscal sponsor.  The partnership has extended beyond a traditional donor relationship. It has been with us from the beginning of our journey and we know we can count on its partnership in the long term.
Toni Rickenback, Director, UK Task Force on issues relating to Arab citizens in Israel
Israel’s declaration of independence promises social and political equality for all its citizens. This ideal requires us to acknowledge and address the difficulties and hardships experienced by every citizen of Israel, regardless of their faith or race. The Task Force has created a space for the UK Jewish community to understand and engage with this important issue and is moving it from the margins to the mainstream.
Sir Trevor Pears CMG

The UK Task Force seeks to deepen UK Jewish understanding of issues relating to Israel’s Arab citizens, many of whom face discrimination and hardship that compromise the ideal, enshrined in Israel’s Declaration of Independence, that all citizens of Israel are equal.  

It was set up by Pears Foundation in 2010 together with the Board of Deputies of British Jews, United Jewish Israel Appeal, New Israel Fund UK and UK Friends of the Abraham Fund Initiatives. It was modelled on its North American sister organisation, the Inter-Agency Task Force on Israeli Arab Issues

The Task Force is crossing boundaries, connecting British Jews with partners in Israel and bringing UK participants face to face with key people and issues. The organisation provides members with advice, support and contacts within Arab communities in Israel, as well as study trips to learn about the realities on the ground. It also encourages initiatives to support civic equality in Israel, both nationally and internationally, facilitating partnerships and leveraging resources to support government and civil initiatives.

Since 2010, the Task Force coalition has grown extensively, reflecting the broad support for its work across the community. With thirty-nine coalition member organisations it is growing in size and aspiration. One of the key reasons for its ongoing success is the ability to craft and deliver targeted messages to specific groups, engaging the education, academic and business communities to increase understanding of key issues from every perspective.  

The Task Force has been extremely successful in raising the level of awareness on the issue and, even more importantly, creating a space where a wide coalition has been free to develop.   As a founding member and long-term partner, Pears Foundation has been involved in setting the strategic direction of the Task Force and providing core funding to allow it to thrive.