Ido Shelem is the CEO and founder of Bridge to the Future. He is a lawyer turned community entrepreneur. Ido is a former strategic advisor to government departments, leading businesses, and foreign governments. He specializes in developing effective methods for developing strong communities in Israel’s border communities (its periphery). He is an advisor for a number of community change programs in Israel, the US, and the former Soviet Union. Ido is a third-generation member of kibbutz Ramat Yochanan and is married with six children.
Bridge To The Future is an Israeli NGO that works to revive communities in Israel’s periphery. Most of these communities suffer from declining populations, outward migration of the most educated, poor self-image, and declining city revenues. Yet, paradoxically, these communities have a wealth of natural resources, are places of historic interest, and most importantly have an untapped bank of oral history bound up in the lives and traditions of its residents. We help rebuild these communities by combining economic, political and social capital. Our workshop will present three examples, i) Beit Shean and the Valley of Springs (Israel), ii) the Israeli-Arab Mediterranean coastal town Jizr-a-Zarqa, and iii) the St Clair CDC in Cleveland, Ohio (USA).