Skip to content

Switcher of the Month

Our Switcher of the month in May 2018 is the Jerusalem Urban Wildlife Initiative, managing Gazelle Valley Park and the Jerusalem Bird Observatory (JBO). These two sites are shifting the relationship between people and nature. The national initiative is a partnership lead by the Ministry of the Environment, the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (SPNI), more than 45 municipalities, and the Beracha Foundation.
Published on Jun 01, 2016

Related CornerPages:

Switcher of the Month

Photo credit: courtesy of Hilary Duff

We are delighted and proud to announce our Switchers of the Month in May are Amir Balaban,a founding member of Gazelle Valley Park, and Alena Kacal, Director of the Jerusalem Bird Observatory (JBO). These two sites are part of the Jerusalem Urban Wildlife Initiative.

Alena Kacal, director of the Jerusalem Bird Observatory and Amir Balaban in Gazelle Valley Park

“Gazelle Valley Park was the first time in Israel where a community created a master plan for an urban wildlife site on such a large scale” Amir Balaban.

This community activism and engagement remains a core value for the Jerusalem Urban Wildlife Initiative today. The Jerusalem Bird Observatory (JBO) employs 40 volunteers who range greatly in age and political belief. It hosts daily bird ringing and school activities during the fall and spring migratory seasons. They also host a program for high school students where they learn the hands-on measurement and observational science.

The Jerusalem Urban Wildlife Initiative has created a place where people understand both the financial and environmental benefits of being close to nature. Places where it can feel like they are immersed in greenery — without ever having to leave the city.

You can learn more about the Jerusalem Urban Wildlife Initiative through the SPNI website and the JBO Facebook page and the Gazelle Valley Park Facebook page.