B Corp Building Tolerance through Travel

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February 24, 2016 - 10:00am PST

According to the UN World Travel Organization, a record-breaking 1.2 billion tourists traveled abroad in 2015. Yet it only takes turning on the news to be reminded that mistrust and misunderstanding between cultures and religions is all too common, begging the question: how can tourism be the catalyst for building tolerance around the world?
In this webinar, Aziz Abu Sarah, Co-Owner and CEO of MEJDI Tours, will share his path from peace builder to social entrepreneur, and explain how MEJDI, a certified B Corp, is redefining what "socially responsible" means in the travel industry. MEJDI connects people—from different religions, nationalities, and ethnic groups—to simply understand each other better. 
Whether you're a budding social entrepreneur, travel enthusiast or both, join this webinar to be inspired to travel differently this year, and learn how social enterprise can transform both the travel industry and world. 


About the speakers

Aziz Abu Sarah

Aziz Abu Sarah

Co-Owner and CEOMEJDI Tours

Aziz Abu Sarah is a National Geographic Explorer and Cultural Educator, as well as a TED Fellow. A Palestinian from Jerusalem, Aziz divides his time between National Geographic and his company MEJDI Tours, a social enterprise focused on introducing multi-narrative cultural education and responsible business practices to the travel industry. The company manages Middle East tours for clients including National Geographic, Fuller Theological Seminary, and Boston University, and MEJDI has been recognized by the UN World Tourism Organization, UN Alliance of Civilizations, and BMW Group for its innovations in travel and education. In the past, Aziz also served as the Executive Director of the Center for World Religions, Diplomacy, and Conflict Resolution at George Mason University (2009-2015), and was the chairman of the joint Israeli-Palestinian organization the Bereaved Families Forum (2006 to 2010).

In the field, Aziz has pioneered and managed projects in conflict resolution and community relations in Afghanistan, Iran, Syria, Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon, Washington D.C, the Virgin Islands, and other sites. He is the co-founder of the “I Am Your Protector” interfaith campaign. He also is a cofounder of Project Amal ou Salam, a grassroots relief organization for Syrian refugees in Turkey, Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon.  

In the media, Aziz has produced and hosted the National Geographic web series Conflict Zone, a series that explores the Israeli-Palestinian conflict from the perspective of Palestinian refugees, the Israeli Defense Forces, Jewish settlers, and more. Aziz has also published articles in the New York Times, Haaretz, theJerusalem Post, Alarabiya, and others. He frequently provides expert analysis for television news programs such as Al Jazeera, CNN and Fox. 

Aziz has been honored to receive numerous awards, including the Goldberg Prize for Peace in the Middle East from the Institute of International Education, the Silver Rose Award from the European Parliament, the Eisenhower Medallion from People to People International, and the Eliav-Sartawi Award for Middle Eastern Journalism from Search for Common Ground. United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon recognized Aziz Abu Sarah’s work during his speech at the 5th Global Forum of the UN Alliance of Civilizations in February 2013, and the UNAOC and BMW Group awarded him the intercultural innovation award in 2011. and Aziz has been named one of the “500 Most Influential Muslims” by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre for six years running (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015).