Ottawa Jewish Bulletin Article: "Ottawa Student Participates In New Glocal Community Development Program At Hebrew University"

Bookmark and Share

Ottawa Jewish Bulletin logo

By Diane Koven

Danny SchwartzFor Danny Schwartz, it was a case of being at the right place at the right time. A serendipitous sequence of events led to his being one of 15 participants in the first cohort of the Glocal Community Development Program at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem – and the only one who was not an Israeli or already living in Israel.

The two-year MA program in the Faculty of Social Sciences is focused on international development work and is designed to give students an opportunity to combine their academic expertise with practical, hands-on experience. Through an internship, the students participate in international development projects with non-governmental organizations.

Schwartz grew up in Ottawa, attended Lisgar Collegiate High School and Carleton University, where he switched his major a couple of times, and spent a year in Japan on an exchange program. While attending a Hillel Shabbat dinner, he heard a talk by Hebrew University Professor Dan Avnon, the founder of the Glocal program.

Intrigued, Schwartz found out more, applied to the program, and was accepted. Not only that, but he was fortunate to have received a scholarship from Canadian Friends of Hebrew University.

“They generously gave me enough money to cover the whole first-year tuition and I am grateful,” said Schwartz.

In January 2011, Schwartz left for Jerusalem to begin his new adventure. Although the program is designed to take two years, with the third semester being the internship portion, the first group of students accelerated their program, completing it in 18 months.

For his internship, Schwartz worked with Village Help Works in Burundi.

“I designed and ran a regional soccer tournament, which involved six regions playing in tournaments. The youth groups from the villages did performances to raise awareness about AIDS,” he said.

“I also worked on an economic development project where we did a market survey in the local area and used the information to start cooperatives for women who were survivors of genderbased violence. Those co-ops are non-farming, such as weaving and candle-making,” he said.

The co-ops have enabled women to have independent incomes and, therefore, independent lives.

Schwartz has returned home to Ottawa and is now looking for ways to implement his knowledge and degree.

“Being with a group of people who were dedicated, mature and focused on making the world a better place – it’s something I have always wanted to do, and now I have the tools to do it,” he said reflecting on his experience in the Glocal program. “You can learn development anywhere, but it is the people involved who make the difference."

Follow us:

Visit our facebook page.TwitterInstagram

CFHU is dedicated to supporting IMRIC through direct funding and by developing key collaborative medical research partnerships between Canada
and Israel.


Get Involved!

Sign Up