Dialogue | Encounters on the Israel Trail
Encounters on the Israel Trail is an annual event which invites Israelis and others to hike the Israel Trail together, while engaging in-depth dialogue about the challenges facing Israeli society. From Eilat to Metula, each of the 40 one-day segments offers immersion in a different section of the Israeli landscape, along with educational programming and meetings with local figures, invited speakers and community initiatives. Each day features a different theme and a discussion session where small groups study text and share their thoughts on issues related to Jewish and Israeli identity, traditional and contemporary culture, memorial, remembrance and social justice. The program brings together participants from a wide range of ages and social sectors for a day, a week or more of walking, discussing, learning and bonding.
Encounters on the Israel Trail was established in 2006 as a living memorial to Sgt. Avi Ofner, by his parents Raya and Yosi Ofner. Avi was among 73 soldiers killed in an army helicopter accident. Today this journey is also dedicated to the memory of victims of terrorism.
In 2015, Encounters on the Israel Trail was awarded the Jerusalem Prize for Israeli Unity by Mayor Nir Barkat.