Peter Yarrow Brings “Operation Respect” to Israel

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Peter Yarrow returns to Israel, bringing his message of compassion with a unique program “Operation Respect” that will be introduced in Israeli schools as a pilot program. Inspired by a song, “Don’t Laugh at Me,” the program, co-directed by Yarrow and Dr. Charlotte Frank, Senior Vice President of McGraw Hill, Operation Respect seeks to address the problem of violence in schools through music, developing an atmosphere of mutual respect and tolerance, where children can feel safe.

 The renowned American folk singer, of the trio “Peter Paul and Mary,” will perform with singers David Broza and Amal Murkus on January 19, in front of Jewish and Arab students in Lod, where the program to fight school violence will be implemented as a pilot program.

 Yarrow visited Israel last April, travelling to schools and other venues, meeting with Israeli educators to discuss the possibility of introducing “Operation Respect” in Israel. Midnight East met with Yarrow at the Jerusalem Cinematheque, where he performed and described the program, which at the time, may have sounded to some like a naïve dream. Yet Yarrow’s dedication to the project, and the rapport he established with the children through his music, inspire hope.

Peter Yarrow/Photo: Matty Stern

 “Operation Respect” has met with success both in the US and other countries, such as Hong Kong, and will be implemented in Israel by the Center for Educational Technology (CET) which adopted it for the Israeli school system in cooperation with the Ministry of Education. The details of the program, in Arabic and Hebrew, may be found on this site: http://itu.cet.ac.il/respect/.

 Midnight East will continue to follow Peter Yarrow and “Operation Respect” in Israel, “with peace as the song in our heart.”

Image credit: Peter Yarrow in performance at the Jerusalem Cinematheque/Photo: Mordechai Malca

1 COMMENT

  1. Peter Yarrow is a voice of hope in a violent world. His message of respect and appreciation for all persons is one that our leaders should adapt. Mr. Yarrow is targeting the future by bringing his message to our children. He has been an advocate for peace in this world since the 1960s while singing with the folk group Peter Paul & Mary. I admire Peter Yarrow for carrying on this quest. His song “Don’t Laugh At Me” brings tears to my eyes every time I hear it. Years ago my young son often asked me ‘Mom, if they don’t like me why don’t they just leave me alone?” Peter Yarrow’s “Operation Respect” is too late for my son but many other children will learn to respect themselves and others as teachers use this valluable tool to create an accepting atmosphere in their classrooms.

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