A Wider Bridge advances “Equality in Israel” and “Equality for Israel” through core strategies of relationship-building, education, grantmaking, and advocacy.
—Missions to Israel
Since 2011, we have provided hundreds of North American LGBTQ leaders in politics, entertainment, government, and advocacy to participate in a mission to Israel and the West Bank to experience the region through an LGBTQ perspective. Mission participants are introduced to Jewish peoplehood, Israel, and its LGBTQ communities, and also meet Jewish, Muslim, Druze and Christian activists working to address the country’s many domestic and foreign challenges and contradictions.
Our Mission Alumni return home to their LGBTQ communities as advocates for A Wider Bridge, Israel, and LGBTQ Israelis.
We also bring Israeli LGBTQ leaders to North America to learn about issues facing North American Jews, LGBTQ folks and allies. In turn, visiting Israeli leaders share stories about their lives in Israel and strategies for the advancement of full equality.
The goals of these Israeli LGBTQ Missions to America are to:
Our AWB missions to Israel and North America expand mutual understanding and engagement, focus on exploring and overcoming the divides between Israelis and the American Diaspora, and strengthen the LGBTQ communities of both North America and Israel.
Beyond the Bridge (BTB) is A Wider Bridge’s leadership network of North American and Israeli LGBTQ (and allied) leaders who have participated in an AWB Leadership Mission to Israel or Reverse Mission to America. The Beyond the Bridge network deepens the engagement of our alumni, provides them with continued education around Israel and the work of A Wider Bridge, and empowers alumni to become key stakeholders in our organization. Through regional salons and national summits, alumni work together to host local programs, champion Israel in national media outlets, mobilize on key issues and advance support for A Wider Bridge in their communities.
Our North American community engagement programs, our monthly newsletter summarizing news from A Wider Bridge and LGBTQ Israel, the outreach work of our Beyond the Bridge alumni network, social media and mobilization campaigns educate and activate our alumni, supporters and the general public about issues concerning the Jewish, LGBTQ, and pro-Israel communities.
Our annual Impact Grants provide LGBTQ NGOs in Israel with financial support to build capacity and amplify activist voices on the ground to advance LGBTQ life across Israel. From metropolitan Tel Aviv to the more traditional periphery, and throughout diverse Arab, Ethiopian, Mizrahi and Orthodox communities and beyond, A Wider Bridge’s Impact Grants help build a stronger, more inclusive Israel.
We believe the best investments to secure LGBTQ rights and community in Israel are those that provide needed financial resources, help build capacity and amplify activist voices on the ground.
A Wider Bridge is committed to advancing full LGBTQ equality in Israel, and ensure Israel and Israelis are treated with respect and fairness at home. Through our LGBTQ Leadership Missions in Israel, and community events across North America, we provide LGBTQ NGOs and leaders in Israel with platforms to demonstrate their work and network with North American colleagues and communities working to address parallel LGBTQ community challenges.
We are also committed to advancing equality for Israel through leading national and international campaigns and mobilizations in partnership with invested A Wider Bridge Mission Alumni, supporters, and community members who call on elected officials, LGBTQ community leadership, and other decision-makers to take action, contact the media, and to share our statements on social media when anti-LGBTQ, Antisemitic or anti-Zionist incidents arise in both Israel and the U.S.
By advocating for our values, we are creating and defending inclusive spaces where our full authentic selves and all of our identities are welcomed.