Weekly Updates – Tel Aviv November 8, 2019
It has been an amazing week. We have had a great time traveling and doing fun activities with your children and I’m excited to tell you about the highlights of the week. Here we go:
On Saturday evening, some of our students joined Gil the Madrich at the memorial event for Itzhak Rabin in Rabin Square. There, the students were exposed to a huge event that contained a lot of political tension, sadness, and hope. At the ceremony, they also had the chance to hear Benny Gantz the former chief of staff who is now standing as the head of the Blue and White party. In addition to the speeches, they saw some musical performances by some of the best Israeli artists. It was a meaningful and important experience for the students that chose to attend.
On Sunday, after internships, most of the students came to the office for the first meeting of our different committees. This semester we are running four different committees and I’m proud to say that many of the students chose to join and invest their time in doing for themselves and for the program.
The four committees are: Culture Committee, which creates and organizes various events and activities, Promoters Committee, which is in charge of promoting the events and getting the maximum amount of students to attend, Newspaper Committee, whose goal is to document the different activities throughout the semester and then at the end create something memorable for everyone to have, and finally the Logistic committee, which will build something together for the warfare of our students. These committees are very important to us because we want to encourage our students to be active and to take charge of their own experiences on our program and in Israel in general.
On Monday for the optional activity, we went ice-skating! The students put on their skates and onesies and had fun slipping and sliding on the ice. It was fabulous to see them having such a great time of pure enjoyment. It was a fun and funny evening for us all.
On Tuesday we all went to Caesarea, which is located in the northern part of Israel. It was an awesome tour of one of the most beautiful and historic cities in Israel. Our first stop was at the national park of Caesarea. The park is home to ancient Roman ruins. We walked around the ruins with our tour guide and managed to gain a real understanding of the different buildings in the ancient Roman city. We saw the amphitheatre, the taverna, the bathhouse and the horse racing fields. It was interesting to learn about the history of the city and to see the preserved ruins; it really helped us to gain a sense of how the city was built and how people lived their lives. Later on, we went to Alona Park to take a hike in the Aqueduct of Caesarea. It was really cool to walk inside the water of the aqueduct in total darkness.
After lunch, we chose to end the trip at one of the most beautiful beaches in Israel, “Hof Hakshatot”. The students were amazed by the beauty of the beach and ran straight to the clear blue water, we also had great weather.
In this week’s Parsha and Pizza with Rabbi Josh, we had a lively and informative discussion on a variety of topics that relate to Judaism in the modern age. We specifically explored the concept of Feminism in the Jewish tradition, which led to a broader discussion on tradition and innovation in Jewish practice. The students brought up a lot of good points and discussions from their Tiyul on Tuesday and the talk from Women of the Wall and they were truly able to connect all the topics this week and hear many different points of view.
On Wednesday evening, we had a “Faces of Israel” activity at the Moadon. This week we met with a speaker who shared her personal story about what it is like to be both religious and LGTB. She also spoke about her involvement with the Israeli government and how she is fighting to legalize gay marriage. Her story was fascinating and inspiring and through it, we were able to understand some of the difficulties involved in being a part of the pride community in Israel for good and bad.
Next week we are going on a tour of Jerusalem. There we will have the chance to explore the history of the city, taste some local food and of course visit the “Kotel”.
The Madrich on call for this weekend is Gill.
In addition, over the next month our recruiting team, Simon, Shani, and Gal, will be traveling around North America and London recruiting for next year. If you know people who might be interested, then please ask them to contact us to set up a meeting. See attached fliers for the cities we will be visiting in the USA. In addition, Simon will be visiting Vancouver at the end of November and London at the beginning of December.
Until next week,