Developing children’s self-confidence and interpersonal skills

Sea of Friends program







The Sea of Friends program is designed for elementary school (grades 3-6) and secondary school students, which operates out of the Daniel Center for Rowing.

The program is designed to:

1. Develop participants’ self-image and self-confidence;
2. Develop participants’ interpersonal and communication skills by teaching active listening, respect, listening, and inclusion.

The program combines group work sessions and rowing at sea or on the Yarkon River. and involves 15 weekly three-hour sessions led by expert facilitators. The sessions comprise an opening workshop, a water activity in which the students ‘go into the world’ to face challenges, and a closing workshop to reflect on the process. Each group comprises no more than 15 students to ensure each participant receives the attention and support they need. The program is designed to foster students’ emotional intelligence and coping mechanisms. Students gain a lot from overcoming challenges that may have previously seemed insurmountable, and achieving these in a group context bolsters their self-confidence.


The program was piloted in the 2017-2018 school year with two classes, one from a Jewish school and one from an Arab school. The school’s teachers reported on particular improvements in the academic performance and social behavior of some of the students as well as a significant improvement in the group dynamics. Overall, students were found to be more respectful, cooperative, and comfortable with each other, which positively impacted academic performance.


This meaningful, powerful program is in high demand and scalable to as many students as possible.

Total cost for one group (15 students over 15 sessions) $12,000
The annual cost for 10 groups is $120,000
REQUESTED DONATION over three years $360,000

The requested donation is to support 10 groups per year for three years, providing continuity and consistency for a critical mass of students.

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