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To mark International Holocaust Remembrance Day this year, the Combat Antisemitism Movement (CAM) and Israeli Community Europe (ICE) are partnering to host “Israelis in Europe Against Antisemitism,” an inaugural three-day conference in Berlin, Germany from January 26-28, 2024 aimed at educating Israelis across Europe on antisemitism and empowering them to develop local initiatives to fight hatred.
The first-of-its-kind conference brings together 60 participants representing 14 Israeli expatriate communities living throughout Europe – in Germany, Austria, Italy, Greece, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Ireland, Netherlands, United Kingdom, Poland, Spain, and Switzerland. Through a series of speakers, workshops, innovation labs, and interactive sessions, participants will build knowledge on the definition of antisemitism, hear directly from descendants of Holocaust survivors and Nazi families in dialogue, and organize grassroots initiatives to combat antisemitism across Europe.
At the end of the conference, participants will work on proposals for community initiatives aimed at combating antisemitism across Europe. The four most promising and scalable initiatives pitched will each be awarded €2,500 micro-grants funded by American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee. In total, €10,000 will be awarded.
Notable speakers at the conference include: Dr. Felix Klein, Commissioner for Jewish Life in Germany; Sacha Roytman, CEO of the Combat Antisemitism Movement (CAM); and Tehila Darmon, Founder and CEO of Israeli Community Europe (ICE).
“Following the October 7th Hamas attack on Israel and the alarming rise in antisemitism worldwide, this conference will empower participants to act as ambassadors of change in their communities,” said Roytman. “We envision attendees leveraging the connections and resources gained at the conference — spanning government, civil society, and innovative technologies — to spearhead local initiatives to address the rising wave of antisemitism across Europe.”
Darmon stated, “The Israeli Community Europe (ICE) has been dedicated over the years to advancing Holocaust remembrance and combating antisemitism. In response to the recent surge in antisemitic incidents and direct threats against Israelis since October 7th, we feel an increased responsibility to expand our initiatives and collaborate with more Israelis in this crucial effort. In 2024, ICE is set to endorse and implement at least four distinct initiatives in various European cities, showcasing our commitment to the essential elements of remembrance, action, and transformative change.”
More information on the conference agenda can be found below:
Day 1 Friday, January 26 — To Remember
Kicking off the 3-day conference, Day 1 focuses on establishing a foundation of antisemitism’s historical roots and contemporary environment in Europe. The opening session features welcoming remarks from CAM CEO Sacha Roytman, ICE Founder and CEO Tehila Darmon, and German Commissioner for Jewish Life in Germany and the Fight against Antisemitism Dr Felix Klein, followed by a special video address by CAM Advisory Board Chair Natan Sharansky. These thought leaders set the stage for the interactive heart of the day — small group discussions titled “My Baggage,” where participants and diverse speakers share motivations for attending the conference while forming personal connections.
Day 2 Saturday, January 27 — To Change
Building on Day 1’s foundation, Day 2 arms participants with practical knowledge and connections to accelerate local antisemitism initiatives upon returning home. Sessions provide context on the contemporary forms of antisemitism and the IHRA Working Definition of Antisemitism.
Beyond practical workshops and sessions, an intimate panel titled “Conversation Between the Third Generation” will facilitate first-person dialogue between Israeli descendants of survivors and Germans with Nazi family ties. Special recognition of International Holocaust
Remembrance Day through a commemorative ceremony will underscore the urgency of applying conference lessons after departing Berlin.
Day 3 Sunday, January 28 — To Act
The closing conference day launches the Innovation Lab led by mentors from the high-tech and activism sectors – an incubator for community-led initiatives to combat antisemitism.
Attendees pitch ideas to receive seed funding and ongoing support over the next year. Guidance from conference speakers assists participants in 14 communities to spark change — where they will return home with initiative to combat antisemitism locally. The Lab represents the ethos of progress over three days, connecting Israelis and allies to activate against antisemitism from the ground up once home.
About the Combat Antisemitism Movement (CAM):
CAM is a global coalition engaging more than 800 partner organizations and four million people from a diverse array of religious, political, and cultural backgrounds in the common mission of fighting the world’s oldest hatred. CAM acts collaboratively to build a better future, free of bigotry, for Jews and all humanity.
About Israeli Community Europe (ICE):
ICE is a non-profit organization founded to address communities of Israeli immigrants throughout Europe. The association works to develop activity centers in various cities in Europe.
The association’s vision is that the activity centers will serve as a home for the community members, meet their different and unique needs, and strengthen their connection to Israeli culture and Jewish identity. The association operates in each activity center in collaboration with the local community and is an incubator for community initiatives created from within the community.
In 2024, ICE operates five centers in five countries: Germany, Austria, Greece, and Spain. The association is expected to expand to more cities in the upcoming years.