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Tel Aviv Weekly Email


Dear Parents & Students,

This week we visited Local Testimony, the largest and most important annual event in Israel for photojournalism and documentary photography. This is the 18th year of the exhibition. In previous years, the exhibition took place in the Eretz Israel Museum in Tel Aviv, but this year, in order to make it accessible to the public in times of Corona, it took place outside.

Ryan Neutel wrote about his experience:

“This Tuesday, we were able to go to the outdoor Local Testimony Exhibition, which presented photos taken from different artists in 2020. The exhibition was interesting, especially seeing that not all the photos included COVID-19. After doing a walk around seeing all the images, we were asked to choose one photo that really spoke to us, and after we each found one, we sat down and discussed them. The images that we saw were both interesting and to an extent eye-opening due to the fact that we were seeing life through someone else’s eyes. If you are in Tel Aviv and have time to go this exhibition I recommend you go.”

Ellen Murray shared:

“On Tuesday, we went to an outdoor museum that used pictures to commemorate powerful moments that happened in 2020 in Israel. We were asked to take a picture of the photo that spoke the most to us. I chose a picture of a protest that happened this past 2020; in it, police officers were spraying protesters with a hose. This photo was extremely powerful for me, because there have been many protests around the world this year, and people are screaming for change. It made me realize we are the change and it’s happening right now.”

And this is from Jamie Penn:

“This week for our Tuesday trip, Aardvark staff took us to an open museum called, Local Testimony. The museum consisted of photos and videos that helped define the year 2020. The section that made me think the most was an area of videos showing the protests that have been happening all around Israel. It reminded me that even in all the chaos of 2020, people are still fighting for what they believe in. Although 2020 hasn’t been the best year, the museum had one underlying theme throughout most of the photos and videos: perseverance.”

Enjoying “Malabi” at Washington Blvd.
Beach time
This week in Selah, we continued to meet in person according the guidelines. Some more students finished quarantine, and we were very happy to see them again!
We continued our discussion of different movements in Judaism and examined data about how different groups of Jews see themselves and each other here in Israel. This was the bridge to continue our exploration of the holiday of Purim through a lens of Jewish unity.

Next week, we are planning our first tiyul and an exciting visit with Bina, the Secular Yeshiva.

In (th)INK! we learned about the collective effort to build a communal sacred space and the tension between individual expression and communal needs based in the description of how the Israelites began to build the Mishkan (Tabernacle).

Today was the last day of the Mada course. Charley Taylor wrote about her experience:

“The past 10 days, I have been in training to become an EMT for Magen David Adom. Our teacher David was amazing, and he made the course very memorable; I did not expect a 60-hour intensive course to be so enjoyable. I met people from many different programs and made some amazing friends. I can’t wait to start working on the ambulances and gain experience through such a meaningful cause. Not to mention the cool jackets 🙂
I feel honoured to be classed as part of such an inspirational team”

Devan Latham on the Monday night Hide and Seek activity:

“On Monday, we had the opportunity to go outside and have a fun in-person activity.
We met in the neighborhood park and played hide and seek. We played a couple of rounds of different games similar to hide and seek. I had a really good time. At the end, our counselors brought us an Arab Israeli dessert called malabi.”

Blake Shanberg wrote about Yazamut:
“The first session of the entrepreneurship (Yazamut) course was way better than I expected. The person in charge is a entrepreneur with a lot of knowledge and experience, who has a masters degree in education. He allowed us to ask a wide variety of questions about topics we’re interested in. Instead of trying to guide the curriculum his way, he actually really cares about what we are interested in learning. At the end of the session, we played a game with a valuable lesson at the end of it. I am really excited about the rest of the programming and to experience more of the entrepreneurship world!”

Mada Training
The Photography of 2020
Exploring “Midtown Tel Aviv”
“On Wednesday, I saw some Instagram stories of flurries in Jerusalem. As a homesick New Yorker, I thought maybe seeing some snow could be the cure. I snapchatted my friend Ellen, and asked what she thought about a little adventure to Jerusalem. She was down, so we made our way right after our last class and got there while it was really coming down! We walked to our old apartment building, got to see one of our old counselors Nitzan, and then headed back to the bus. But then, we learned we were stuck for the night! Cold, with wet feet (since our boots were forgotten), we made the most of the snowy evening. I was surprised to see how wildly unprepared Israel is for snow—they use farm equipment to “plow” the streets! Luckily, we both had friends to stay with and we got to enjoy the blizzard. I then remembered why I came to a warm country…I HATE THE SNOW!! Homesickness=cured! It’s been snowing in New York for basically two weeks, so I’m excited I’ll be returning in the summer. Ellen and I safely made our way back to (much warmer) Tel Aviv early Thursday morning and we had a successful adventure!”
– Jake Brooks
Our Madricha on call this weekend is Shayun.
Shabbat Shalom,


Aardvark Israel Tel Aviv:
39 Levinsky Street, 2nd Floor
Tel Aviv 6610910
Aardvark Israel Jerusalem:
3 Ezrat Yisrael Street
Jerusalem 9462503

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Statement on COVID-19

Click here for our response to COVID-19 and our extended refund policy for August 2020 Programs

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