A new Jewish educational project, featuring a series of one-on-one interviews with 12 of Israel’s 37 current Olympic athletes, aims to use the London Olympics as a vehicle to strengthen the connection between Israel and the Diaspora.

The initiative is a spin-off of iMMERSE, an ongoing project that aims to boost knowledge about Israel in the Diaspora. News organization ISRAEL21c and iCenter, a non-profit US-based educational resource, run the program.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

While the central theme of iMMERSE Olympics is a series of short video interviews with athletes such as tennis player Shahar Pe’er, swimmer Imri Ganiel and Israel’s judo champion Arik Ze’evi, its online platform contains educational materials and background information on Israel’s participation in the Olympics over the years.

“These videos highlight the experiences and reflections of Israel’s elite athletes and are powerful tools in building stronger relationships between North Americans and Israelis,” commented Anne Lanski, executive director of iCenter, which the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation and the Jim Joseph Foundation support.

Israel21c president Amy Friedkin added: “Joining together with the iCenter to produce this special feature on the Israeli Olympic team is a wonderful way to enable kids and their families to get to know Israel and Israelis.”

Although iMMERSE is aimed primarily at students in grades 4 to 12, their teachers and their parents, anyone looking for information on Israel’s Olympic team can access the site.