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Regional Roundup: The Midwest

September 12, 2019 at 8:41 am
by Birthright Israel Foundation

Birthright Israel Foundation is so very fortunate to have more than 35,000 annual supporters. Our donors care deeply about Israel and the Jewish future and they are proud to be part of the Birthright Israel Foundation Family.

Get to know some of our friends from the Midwest.

Barbara & Rick Silverman, Chicago, IL

“A Birthright Israel trip provides young people the opportunity to hopefully begin their lifelong connection with Israel. When they visit the historic sites, witness the array of people who call themselves Israelis, and relish the tastes in this land of our ancestors, it is the perfect antidote to any negative press. In spite of Israel’s imperfections, the young travelers can only be in awe when they see for themselves what Israel has accomplished in its short lifetime.

When donors like myself support Birthright Israel, we are making a crucial decision to keep the existence of the Jewish community alive and vibrant. This trip is our chance to engage young people at the beginning of adulthood when they face negativity about Israel and are unaware of the facts. The gift of Birthright Israel provides our younger generations the tools to build a body of knowledge about Israel, Judaism and our collective heritage.” -Barbara Silverman

Eaton Steel Corporation/The Goodman Family, Detroit, MI

“Birthright Israel is doing a critical job at a critical time in the world when anti-Semitism and anti-Israel attacks are on the rise. It’s taking our young people who have never been to Israel and showing them firsthand the land, people and history of our homeland. They then can speak about Israel and defend her – which we need right now.

Many young people today are neutral or conflicted about Israel, if they don’t attend Jewish Day School. They most likely have had little education about Israel and the Holocaust. Birthright Israel gives the young people a chance to feel the country [Israel] and get immersed in the culture alongside their Israeli peers and it’s then they truly begin to understand our heritage and homeland.

Our main focus as a family when it comes to philanthropy is civic and Jewish. There are a lot of Holocaust survivors on my wife’s side and soon enough the younger generations won’t hear or see tattooed arms anymore to ask questions or remember how horrific it was. We support Birthright Israel Foundation because it helps the younger generations of Jews understand our history and form a bond with the State of Israel, which is more important today than ever before.

There’s no better way to educate young Jews about Israel than to give them the gift of touching the land and meeting their Israeli peers who they form lifelong friendships with – from here the impact of the trip will stay forever.” -Mark Goodman

Robert Schuckit, Carmel, IN

“I became a supporter of Birthright Israel for many reasons, the first is you can see how the staff is wholeheartedly invested in its mission. Second, the trips have proven to have a positive effect on young Jewish adults, especially the less connected, as they become Israel supporters. Third, as a Birthright Israel parent, I saw the excitement my kids had when they returned, I also see it in their friends. And finally, the trip had an impact on my community; our young Jewish adults are eager to get involved and talk about Israel which is something we need.

I believe it’s crucial others financially get involved in Birthright Israel Foundation. It’s our biggest asset to combat the negativity surrounding Israel, we need young Jewish adults to experience the land firsthand and feel connected to Judaism – this trip does just that.” -Robert Schuckit

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