Israel Tennis Centers Hosts Extraordinary Month of Special Events

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Hundreds of Children from Multiple ITC Programs Came Together at Various ITC Locations

Jewish and Arab children celebrating Purim together in peaceful coexistence

February may be shortest month of the year, but at the Israel Tennis Centers, it was long on special events and other activities involving hundreds of children from virtually every ITC location.

The month kicked off with the ITC’s Annual Winter Trip to the Hermon Mountain. Children from Israel Tennis Centers in Akko, Arad, Ashkelon, Haifa, Jaffa, Jerusalem, Ramat Hasharon, Tel Aviv and Yokneam all spent an exhilarating day in the snow. In addition, the ITC’s northern centers enjoyed a fun filled afternoon swimming and ice skating at the Canada Center in Metula.

The ITC’s Embrace Program was the focal point of a special tournament at the Elizabeth & Lawrence Krulik Family Israel Tennis Center in Tiberias. At the end of the day, participants received new equipment along with trophies signifying their participation in the day’s activities. Most of these at-risk children come from low income families, so the new gear was icing on the cake for everyone involved.

Another wonderful activity for at-risk children involved the Embrace Program at the ITC – Kiryat Shmona. 70 children spent a fun-filled afternoon with 20 soldiers from one of Israel’s elite IDF Armored Corps units. Together they competed in different sports, ending the day sharing a delicious meal. It was a great learning experience for the children, interacting with the soldiers and asking lots of interesting questions about their service in the IDF.

And speaking of the Army, two ITC girls who graduated from the High Performance Program at the Nussdorf-Mark Families Israel Tennis Center in Jaffa were each awarded certificates of excellence from their respective Army Corp units. They and other ITC alums occupy key roles within the military, including strategically sensitive positions along Israel’s borders. The Army selects ITC alums to serve in its elite units because of the leadership skills they learn at the ITC.

ITC alums also played a key role during the ITC’s celebration of Girls Day at the center in Ramat Hasharon. Over 30 girls from different centers came together for an exciting day of sports and education. They competed in a tennis tournament and enjoyed a lecture by ITC Coach Ronen Moralli. The highlight of the day was a Q & A session with a panel of ex-ITC players, including Ana Smashnova, Rakefet Binyamini and Ana Spivakovsky. Each woman talked about their experiences and the life lessons they learned at the ITC that put them on the road to success.

ITC’s littlest ones got into the act as well during February. The Twinned Kindergartens at the ITC – Akko celebrated Purim together. The Jewish children taught their Arab friends all about this special festival, and they all enjoyed dressing up, singing, dancing and playing fun games together.

And finally, ITC locations throughout Israel organized activities to celebrate Family Day. This event included participation by the parents. To see the children and their parents all interacting together really drove home the essence of what the Israel Tennis Centers is all about, empowering Israel’s children…beyond tennis and beyond borders.

About the Israel Tennis Centers Foundation:

The Israel Tennis Centers Foundation (ITC) is a 501 (c) 3 not-for-profit organization that works tirelessly through the medium of sport to enhance the development of Israeli youth. Since opening its first center in Ramat Hasharon in 1976, the ITC has helped over 400,000 children, many of whom come from outlying development towns throughout Israel. The ITC’s 14 centers stretch from Kiryat Shmona on the Lebanese border in the North to Beer Sheva bordering the Negev Desert in the South. http://www.israeltenniscenters.org.

Contacts:

Jacqueline Glodstein                
ITC Vice President/Global Development    
646-884-7450
jglodstein@israeltenniscenters.org

Richard Weber
ITC Global Director of Marketing
646-884-7410
rweber@israeltenniscenters.org

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Richard Weber
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