categoryBirthright Israel Alumni

What are alumni saying this week? (October 22, 2018)

by Birthright Israel Foundation October 22, 2018 at 11:00 am
Venessa's 2018 Birthright Israel group

What are alumni saying this week? (October 22, 2018)

by Birthright Israel Foundation October 22, 2018 at 11:00 am

No matter where in the world a Birthright Israel participant comes from, each and every single one continues to relive the magic of Israel throughout their entire lives. With more than 650,000 alumni embarking on the journey of a lifetime we wanted to share with you, by week, an insight into just how impactful Birthright Israel is. Read More

Birthright Israel: A Journey That Changed Me Forever

by Kate Eppers September 17, 2018 at 3:00 pm
Kate Eppers

Birthright Israel: A Journey That Changed Me Forever

by Kate Eppers September 17, 2018 at 3:00 pm

I could write novels upon novels about how beneficial Birthright Israel is and how this trip changed my life for the better. Growing up, I really didn’t know much about Judaism or my culture. I am 100% Jewish on both sides, but I was not in touch with my roots. Because I didn’t come from a huge Jewish community, once in Israel, it was like nothing else I had ever experienced before; to be surrounded by all these new Jewish friends from around the states. Read More

A Match Made in Israel: Ian & Mackenzie

by Birthright Israel Foundation September 1, 2018 at 8:30 am

A Match Made in Israel: Ian & Mackenzie

by Birthright Israel Foundation September 1, 2018 at 8:30 am

For Ian Persits and Mackenzie Samet, Birthright Israel was much more than a free trip—it was where their love story began. Although both from New York, the two of them were brought up in very different homes. Ian was born and raised in Brooklyn in a Russian-Jewish household. His parents immigrated to the United States in 1975 to build a better life for their children. Read More

A Granddaughter’s Understanding

by Sara Greenberg August 2, 2018 at 1:02 pm

A Granddaughter’s Understanding

by Sara Greenberg August 2, 2018 at 1:02 pm

From an early age, I knew Israel was an important place. My mother’s parents had both survived the Holocaust. After World War II, my grandfather, a survivor of Auschwitz, volunteered in a displaced persons camp in Germany helping other Jewish refugees get to British-controlled Palestine. While my grandfather hoped to also emigrate to Eretz Yisrael, his one surviving family member from the war, his brother, was unable to secure a visa and instead they accompanied each other to the United States. Read More

Welcome To Your Ordinary Birthright Experience!

by Oz Isseroff July 10, 2018 at 7:12 pm

Welcome To Your Ordinary Birthright Experience!

by Oz Isseroff July 10, 2018 at 7:12 pm

A staff member observes how Birthright’s Special Needs trips…aren’t especially different from any other. Ben Gurion Airport, early in the morning, a group of young Canadian or American Jews ​get off the air-conditioned ​air​plane straight into the​ hot​ Mediterranean climate, tired after a long flight, on their faces ​a mixture of pressure and excitement ​is evident​. Read More

Philly Faces: Birthright Trip Inspired Career

by Selah Maya Zighelboim July 5, 2018 at 4:02 pm

Philly Faces: Birthright Trip Inspired Career

by Selah Maya Zighelboim July 5, 2018 at 4:02 pm

At Adath Israel, a typical day doesn’t really exist, Julia Campbell said. Campbell has worked as the program and marketing coordinator at Adath Israel for just over a year. At the Merion Station synagogue, you can find the 25-year-old organizing events, meeting with staff, communicating with congregants and, right now, planning for the High Holidays, in addition to many other tasks. Read More

Birthright Israel: Challenging Beliefs & Developing Foundations

by Haley Pogachefsky June 27, 2018 at 4:49 pm

Birthright Israel: Challenging Beliefs & Developing Foundations

by Haley Pogachefsky June 27, 2018 at 4:49 pm

During my time at Tufts University, I spent months considering whether or not to participate in a Birthright Israel trip. In weighing my decision, I decided that if I were ever to do Birthright I wanted my trip to be through an institution I knew would respect all sides of the geopolitical issue at play. Read More

A Hamsa Keychain Changed My Life

by Ilana Fromm May 22, 2018 at 2:22 pm
Ilana Fromm on her trip in 2014

A Hamsa Keychain Changed My Life

by Ilana Fromm May 22, 2018 at 2:22 pm

Four years ago, I boarded a plane to take a journey with Birthright Israel. I had very few expectations. As a senior in college, the past President of a national Jewish sorority, and a member of the Chabad Student Board, I was confident in my Jewish identity. I was raised in a strong Jewish community, attended Hebrew School twice a week until my Bat Mitzvah, and celebrated the High Holidays with my extended family. Read More

Getting Back to My Roots

by Nikita Rotin May 17, 2018 at 9:45 am

Getting Back to My Roots

by Nikita Rotin May 17, 2018 at 9:45 am

When I turned 16, my father told me I was Jewish. This isn’t uncommon in Russia, where I was born and raised. Many people discover their Jewish roots later in life. But I just didn’t think I’d be one of them. I spent the next few weeks poring over family documents – birth certificates, passports, letters. Read More