Uncategorized Pesach Greetings from Year Course in Israel
As the past weeks have seen the world plunge further into uncertainty, our Year Coursers have continued to demonstrate a commitment to community, tikkun olam, self-fulfillment and the Zionist dream.
Our Yama students in Jerusalem are entering the final stages of their courses, which has seen them learn how to critique Israeli TV in Ulpan, become effective Israel activists in Zionism and proud articulators of their Jewish identity in the Jewish philosophy course. Like the rest of the world, students have been interacting with their teachers on Zoom and working hard to remain focused on their studies from the comfort of their apartments or open spaces of the Jerusalem campus. With the weather improving everyday, YCers have been spending their days in the Spring sun, running dance, yoga and HIT classes for one another as well as hanging out in hammocks savoring the peace and tranquility that comes with social distancing. Each evening, our experiential education team have been running activities to help keep spirits high that include competitive game nights, interactive quizzes, extra-curricular courses, podcast recordings and a plethora of other opportunities to stay connected and engaged.
After what has been a very tough few weeks for Israeli agriculture, hit hard by travel restrictions and nationwide lockdowns, the Kedma group in Tel Aviv were the stars of national news while volunteering to help farmers collect their grapefruit harvest, and ensure Israelis can get their intake of Vitamin C. The day, organized in partnership with HaShomer HaChadash, was such a success that the farmers requested our entire Year Course cohort to come and be a part of this vital initiative. (Click here for a story on our volunteering on i24 English) Next week the students will be helping to bring in the much-anticipated strawberry harvest. Beyond the respite and joy that comes with leaving campus, all in accordance with the Ministry of Health guidelines, students commented on how the opportunity gave them a real chance to reconnect with the land and people of Israel.
As we approach Pesach, our students have been working together in creating a YC Hagaddah, with insights, recipes, games, and pictures to help bring a sense of togetherness during this time. In addition, I have been working closely with the group to plan seder night itself. The enthusiasm shown by our Year Coursers to have meaningful evening will ensure that our Pesach together on Year Course will be filled with good food, tradition sharing, song singing and many opportunities to deeply reflect on how together we can transition from a sense of isolation to reflecting on the true significance of freedom in this time.
Wishing you all a healthy, happy and liberating Pesach,
Rabbi Adam Drucker
Year Course Director of Experiential Education