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Canada and Israel’s Tennis & Education Centers hold events for young players

The children who took part will become future ambassadors for both Israel and Canada.

Children get trained in tennis through the Israel Tennis & Education Center. Credit: ITEC.
Children get trained in tennis through the Israel Tennis & Education Center. Credit: ITEC.

Eight top players from Israel Tennis & Education Centers (ITEC) joined a team of U12 Canadian players in Toronto to train, compete and experience a cultural exchange that extends far beyond the tennis court.

It was all part of a weeklong series of events and competitions that took place from Aug. 9-16. The first three days consisted of training, and the last four days saw the teams compete in Canada’s U12 Team Cup competition.

“After a while, the Israelis were teaching the Canadian players Hebrew, and the Canadians were teaching the Israelis a few French words,” said Amy Harrington, ITEC executive director, Canada. “The Canadians had lots of questions about Israel and daily life. Together, they explored the group’s mixture of Jewish, Christian and Muslim heritages, teaching one another and letting curiosity lead the way.”

ITEC strives to strengthen the relationship between Israel and other nations, as well as promote lifelong friendships on and off the court by encouraging these types of exchanges. The children who took part in the Team Cup will become future ambassadors for both Israel and Canada, ultimately bringing the two nations closer through the bonds of tennis.

The event was organized by Michael Downey, president and CEO of Tennis Canada, and the Tennis Canada team, led by Oded “Dedi” Jacob, who organized and ran a world-class tournament. The Canadians will travel to Israel in November during the next leg of this Team Cup.

Israel Tennis & Education Center players and Tennis Canada players competed in Canada’s U12 Team Cup competition, which Israel won. Credit: ITEC.

ITEC and Canada Giveback 

A second event cross-cultural event between ITEC and Tennis Canada was a giveback opportunity with children of the San Romanoway Revitalization Association, a nonprofit social service agency that provides meals, after-school assistance, and summer programming for at-risk children and youth in the community. 

The Teams went to the Jane & Finch Community Center of Toronto who hosted the clinic, thanks in part to the support of Philpott Children’s Tennis who provided additional coaches and tennis equipment.

About Israel Tennis & Education Centers (ITEC) 

Israel Tennis & Education Centers (ITEC) empowers children and transforms lives by providing opportunities to support any Israeli child regardless of geography, religion, ethnicity, physical ability or socioeconomic status. Since opening its first center in Ramat Hasharon in 1976, ITEC has helped over 500,000 children, many of whom live in underserved towns throughout Israel. ITEC currently serves nearly 7,000 children weekly throughout 24 communities, stretching from the Lebanese border in the North to Beer-Sheva. The ITEC Foundation, a 501(c)3, is the fundraising organization for ITEC, with offices in New York City, Florida and Toronto. For more information, visit :

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