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Community innovators – transforming the social landscape

Israel is renowned as the world's high-tech powerhouse. Yet it is also a nation in which deep inequality has developed between those who have gotten aboard the high-tech locomotive which had pulled the Israeli economy into the globalized 21st century and those who have been left behind.

This chasm is associated with all of Israel's fault lines. It is generational, geographic, socioeconomic, cultural, and ethnic. And it is, perhaps, the most dangerous gap of them all.

But what if the energy and ingenuity of Tel-Hai's many budding entrepreneurs, the energy which had served Israel so well over the past generation, could be turned inwards, towards uplifting our communities, rather than merely towards developing new export oriented products?

That is the concept underlying the community innovators program.

It aims at promoting innovative social startups and nurturing a daring social entrepreneurial discourse in the halls of our college. In 2019 the program selected projects that ran the gamut from:

  • A shared artistic space for autism spectrum and neurotypical artists
  • A combined backpacker hostel / workshop center enabling closer encounters between tourists to the Galilee panhandle and the local communities
  • A face-to-face call center providing senior citizens with personalized guidance of online tools to better their daily lives.
  • Transforming an empty container into a plastic recycling center combined with an attractive social gathering place and workshop.
  • A youth empowerment and life skills training center.
  • A biweekly mental health support and social gathering center.
  • Software programming and technological training for periphery youths and for women.
  • A high-tech art gallery exhibiting Galilean artists.


This year the program includes projects such as:

  • Reconstructing homes for needy Kiryat Shemona residents
  • A low-fee social cinema for Kiryat Shemona residents
  • An online social market for products and services by native Galileans.
  • A single application integrating every volunteer activity and institution in the city.
  • Lean-in programs providing girls and young women with technological skills and training.

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