What propels me is seeing people there suffering. What pushes me to keep going is when I hear that a family is desperate. They hang on to words, even though sometimes I can't help them. I'm propelled by the urge to prove to the world, and to the Palestinians in particular, that in Israel there are not only soldiers who kill, but there are people who care. That's one of the only things that drives me.
People think that I go there and push because I love Arabs too much, that I like being among Arabs too much. No. I do love being with Arabs, but I'd like to pay them friendly visits, not fight their battles. I'm driven to show them and prove that there are people in Israel who really want peace and truly care. There's nothing I can do with the older ones because they've been to Israel already and they know what Israelis are. I care about the young children. I collect used toys and go to a kindergarten and gather 1-2 children and speak to them in their own language, in Arabic, and give out the toys. I tell them that the toys are from people in Israel, from Jews, Israelis, that this toy is from a child who gave it up so that they could have a toy, because maybe they have a little more than them. It does something. I came across villages that had never had contact with Israelis apart from soldiers, and it matters. It changes opinions.
To this day I'm in touch with boys for whom I was the first Israeli they could even understand and speak to. I spoke to them in their language and explained things to them. At first they were under the impression that I was Arab, so I stood up to them. I said, "No, I'm not Arab, I'm Jewish-Israeli. I do speak Arabic, it makes both my life and yours easier, but I'm Jewish-Israeli. There's nothing you can do, you can't make me an Arab. You must accept me as an Israeli Jew. Then I'll be with you all the way then. If you continue insisting that I'm Arab, I'm not here."