Elias Zarina - Co-Founder and Community Manager
As a 36-year-old Greek-Orthodox Christian and resident of Jerusalem, Elias was born in the Christian Quarter of the Old City. He grew up in the Christian quarter and was educated in Beit Jala and Bethlehem. A series of events and crisis situations, together with the achievements of his life in Jerusalem and Tel-Aviv, have brought him to the realization that Israel is the safest place in the Middle East for Christians, his family and himself. Elias is the first social activist within the Arabic-speaking Christian community in Jerusalem who openly works for the integration of the Arabic-speaking Christians of Jerusalem into the Israeli society.
Amit Barak - Co-Founder and Project Manager
Residing in Judea, Amit is a 43 year-old Israeli Jew born in the Galilee city of Nazareth Illit (now named Nof HaGalil). In the past eight years, Amit has been heading efforts to build bridges between the Arabic-speaking Christians and the Jews in Israel and abroad. He was one of the initiators of the historical movement to integrate Arabic-speaking Christians into the IDF and into Israeli society. Within this context, he worked for five years with Father Gabriel Naddaf from Nazareth. Amit Meets Christian delegations from all over the world and hosts pastors in his home, the place where the prophet Amos walked his flocks.
Charmaine Hedding - Co-Founder
Charmaine is an international consultant in development management for the non-profit sector, and in particular the religious freedom field. With over 15 years of experience, Charmaine has designed and implemented emergency relief & development programs, and built capacity-building programs for diverse groups responsible for refugee welfare, especially people fleeing persecution. Ms. Hedding has trained and consulted for government agencies, local authorities and various non-governmental organizations. Her work has been featured in The Washington Times, World Magazine and Decision Magazine.
Eric Goldberg - Co-Founder
Raised in Mexico and the United States, Eric moved to Israel at the age of 18 where he joined the IDF. Since then, he has served in a variety of business development and marketing positions in both Government and the private sector. His philanthropic work commenced in 2008 with the establishment of the Ariela Foundation (later absorbed into the Olim Be Yachad organization) which promoted excellence amongst Israelis of Ethiopian origin. With a passion for integrating Israeli minorities who believe in coexistence with Israeli society, he became one of the original founders and Board Members of the Jerusalemites’ Initiative.