categoryBirthright Israel Alumni

My Spiritual Journey with Birthright Israel

by Alexis Vance July 10, 2019 at 7:29 am
Alexis in Jerusalem

My Spiritual Journey with Birthright Israel

by Alexis Vance July 10, 2019 at 7:29 am

There’s a difference between being Jewish and being Jew “ish.” I was born Jewish, but I was not raised Jewish. Back in the 1940’s, my Ashkenazi grandmother was born and raised Jewish in Brooklyn, New York. Although it was very unusual for women of her time to receive proper Jewish education, she continued to practice Judaism well into her adulthood. Read More

Expecting the Unexpected on Birthright Israel

by Ariana Sloan July 2, 2019 at 7:37 am
Ariana on Birthright Israel

Expecting the Unexpected on Birthright Israel

by Ariana Sloan July 2, 2019 at 7:37 am

One word that I would use to describe my Birthright Israel trip would be “breathtaking.” My Birthright Israel trip was humbling and very meaningful. Not only did I learn about Israeli culture, but I also discovered a deeper connection within myself that I hadn’t felt before. There’s that saying, “expect the unexpected” and that really rang true on this trip. Read More

Birthright Was My 14th Trip To Israel, Yet It Was My First

by Emily Nassir June 25, 2019 at 6:10 am
Emily with her Birthright Israel group

Birthright Was My 14th Trip To Israel, Yet It Was My First

by Emily Nassir June 25, 2019 at 6:10 am

Israel has been part of my life for as long as I can remember. My father was born in Tehran, Iran, and moved to Israel with his family during the Revolution of 1978. He would later immigrate to the United States, alone and as a teenager, while his family remained in the Middle East. Read More

The Real Birthright: Inheriting Our Jewish Story

by Gil Troy June 20, 2019 at 2:00 pm
Foundation Banner Holders in the 2019 Celebrate Israel Parade

The Real Birthright: Inheriting Our Jewish Story

by Gil Troy June 20, 2019 at 2:00 pm

These sleights of hands and oversights rest on a bigger distortion – the barrage of claims that young American Jews are abandoning Israel. At this year’s Independence Day ceremonies, Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein identified Israel’s – and the Jewish people’s – greatest natural resource, which is pollution-free and ever renewable. “The people of Israel have a story,” Edelstein said, “a story about slaves who became free, who brought to the entire world a new hope of freedom, new tidings of peace, and a new purpose of justice.” Then, addressing “you, the child who is watching the ceremony right now,” Edelstein urged: “Keep believing that you are part of a wonderful story that began in this country against all odds, and its continuation depends on you.” Edelstein’s words reflected his background as a Soviet refusenik, a Prisoner of Zion and an educator. Read More

My Birthright Israel Story Is Still Alive, 13 Years Later

by Rachel Barnehama June 18, 2019 at 8:35 am
Rachel staffing Birthright Israel

My Birthright Israel Story Is Still Alive, 13 Years Later

by Rachel Barnehama June 18, 2019 at 8:35 am

No matter how many times I have heard the flight attendant announce “Baruch Habayim L’yisrael (Welcome to Israel),” over the loudspeaker, a chill radiates throughout my body. Each Birthright Israel trip I have had the opportunity to partake in, whether it be as a participant or as a Madricha (staff), brings me an overwhelming sense of excitement and adventure. Read More