I BELONG ISRAEL for youth from Israel and the Diaspora - מסע ישראלי

I BELONG ISRAEL for youth from Israel and the Diaspora

The joint journey of youth from Israel and Jewish youth from the Diaspora contributes to a complex and profound understanding of the past, present and future, reflected through diverse Jewish perspectives.

Due to its unique format I BELONG ISRAEL provides a platform for enhancing the message, emphasizing Jewish identity as the common denominator of the youngsters and as the source of belonging to the Jewish people. This encounter, and the dialogue generated among the youth, help to strengthen their sense of belonging to one people.

The groups move simultaneously along I BELONG ISRAEL’s geographical and conceptual alignment. Each day’s activities harmonize with the day’s theme. Throughout the journey, the encounter follows two directions:

The first is a series of activities that includes trails, ceremonies, volunteering, evening activities and the Sabbath. The second is based on inter-group connections, which merge at several junctions during the week to enhance the shared experience.

The uniqueness of I BELONG ISRAEL is that it gives participants the opportunity to gain understanding and forge meaningful and ongoing connections based on an uninterrupted journey of identity formation over a number of days. During this time, both individually and as a group they conduct an in-depth exploration of our unique identity as Jews in the chain of generations.

Every year, some 30,000 Israeli high school students participate in I BELONG ISRAEL.  The joint trip, adapted from existing programs, is offered to overseas educational organizations. It is suited to diverse groups whose needs differ from community to community.

The program is specially designed to secure the Jewish and Zionist identity and commitment of our young people. Diaspora youth join their Israeli counterparts on a 6-day roots journey through Israel past and present, to clarify their identity and formulate a vision for the future based upon a newfound sense of belonging and commitment to the Jewish homeland, heritage and global people.

The journey explores our deep Jewish roots in our ancestral homeland from Biblical times. It goes on to follow the course of the 1948 War of Independence and concludes in Jerusalem with educational tours of key national sites such as Yad Vashem and Mt. Herzl, culminating in a traditional, joyous Shabbat experience which greatly augments the Jewish identity-enhancing aspect of the program.

Each of the six days of the Journey has its own theme related to the students’ concentric circles of identity developed through site visits, textual study and informal “round-robin” discussions geared to encourage the student to bring his/her self-understanding and successive layers of identity into sharper focus, as follows:

The I BELONG ISRAEL Itinerary at a Glance

Day 1: The Individual – Personal goals and aspirations

Day 2: The Group – Cooperation and communication skills, group interaction

Day 3: The Community – Volunteer activities in underprivileged areas, the power of giving

Day 4: The Land of Israel – Our story begins long before 1948

Day 5: The State of Israel – Connection and commitment to the State of Israel

Day 6: Jewish identity and connection to the Jewish People

For further details please contact Orly Rozenbaum: 9722-588-7893 or orly@masaisraeli.org

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