categoryBirthright Israel Alumni

What are parents saying about Birthright Israel this summer?

by Birthright Israel Foundation August 1, 2019 at 3:00 pm
2019 Summer Bus Full of Participants in Haifa

What are parents saying about Birthright Israel this summer?

by Birthright Israel Foundation August 1, 2019 at 3:00 pm

“My daughter loved every minute of the Israeli people, places, food, information and experiences. She went in convinced that while the trip would offer exposure to valuable historical and cultural insights, she’d be bored. Instead, she returned in awe. The group explored from sunup to sundown daily, and my daughter felt like no sightseeing stone was left unturned. Read More

Birthright Israel Helped Me Accept My Disability

by Aaron Kaufman • Chevy Chase, MD July 16, 2019 at 8:52 am
Aaron on Birthright Israel

Birthright Israel Helped Me Accept My Disability

by Aaron Kaufman • Chevy Chase, MD July 16, 2019 at 8:52 am

My No Limits Birthright Israel trip was one of the greatest experiences of my life! A person with a disability can often feel alone and isolated. I have Cerebral Palsy and this trip was so special because I met people who are going through the same challenges and have similar fears and anxieties as I did. I realized for the first time that I am not alone and there are people like me. Read More

My Spiritual Journey with Birthright Israel

by Alexis Vance • New York, NY July 10, 2019 at 7:29 am
Alexis in Jerusalem

My Spiritual Journey with Birthright Israel

by Alexis Vance • New York, NY 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 • Stevenson Ranch, CA July 2, 2019 at 7:37 am
Ariana on Birthright Israel

Expecting the Unexpected on Birthright Israel

by Ariana Sloan • Stevenson Ranch, CA 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 • Great Neck, NY 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 • Great Neck, NY 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 • Great Neck, NY June 18, 2019 at 8:35 am
Rachel staffing Birthright Israel

My Birthright Israel Story Is Still Alive, 13 Years Later

by Rachel Barnehama • Great Neck, NY 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

VIDEO: Discovering My Jewish Heritage After Growing Up Jewish & Christian

by Brian Quinn • Atlanta, GA June 11, 2019 at 8:59 am
Brian and his brother at the Western Wall

VIDEO: Discovering My Jewish Heritage After Growing Up Jewish & Christian

by Brian Quinn • Atlanta, GA June 11, 2019 at 8:59 am

Brian Quinn grew up in Wisconsin to an African-American mother who is Jewish and an Irish-American father who is Christian. He always knew his Jewish heritage was part of him, but being the only Jew in his high school, he slowly felt both religions taking a back seat. Fast forward to now, Brian’s younger brother went on Birthright Israel and couldn’t stop raving about his experience and the knowledge he gained about their Jewish heritage. Read More

Birthright Israel Gave Me A Chance To Ask Questions

by Jason Miller-Goodman • San Antonio, TX June 11, 2019 at 8:52 am
Jason on his Birthright Israel trip

Birthright Israel Gave Me A Chance To Ask Questions

by Jason Miller-Goodman • San Antonio, TX June 11, 2019 at 8:52 am

And here’s how the answers have impacted my life. Israel has always held a place of intrigue in my life. It is the place of the patriarchs and matriarchs of Judaism; it has also been a place of significant debate for millennia. Regardless, I consider it to be my second home today. Read More

Tens of Thousands of New Yorkers March to Celebrate Israel

by Haley Cohen June 4, 2019 at 4:45 pm
Elizabeth and Ira Savetsky with their two daughters at the 2019 Parade.

Tens of Thousands of New Yorkers March to Celebrate Israel

by Haley Cohen June 4, 2019 at 4:45 pm

Tens of thousands of Israel supporters gathered in Manhattan on Sunday for the 55th annual Celebrate Israel Parade – the largest celebration of Israel in the world. Beginning on Fifth Avenue and 57th Street and making their way up to 75th Street, marchers embraced this year’s theme of “Only in Israel” from the 1970s Hebrew classic “Rak B’Yisrael.” The parade, which began in 1965, has been organized by the Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) of New York since 2011. “Celebrate Israel brings the Jewish community together in support of Israel. Read More