This practical program familiarizes young olim families and their school-aged children with the Hebrew language and Israeli culture. Visits to places like a matzah bakery, the Jerusalem Aquarium, the Old City, a mezuzah workshop, the Bloomfield Science Museum, and other popular sites provide a fun way for new olim to improve their Hebrew and accustom themselves to the social cues that are so unique to Israel.
Young singles make up a high percentage of olim each year. These new immigrants are often without family or community.
Project ATID offers single women in their 20s a place to socialize where they can make new friends, eat dinner, attend shiurim, and have fun. Knowing they’re not alone empowers these young women to thrive and succeed religiously and socially.
One of the unique components of OU Israel’s The Bais, an evening men’s Beit Midrash program in memory of Mrs. Charlotte Brachfeld a’h, is the in-depth course in safrut taught by expert sofer Rabbi Tzvi Mauner. It’s now in a fourth cohort of participants learning to write their own Megillat Esther. In addition to writing the megillah, participants learn the relevant halachot to begin to write mezuzot as well.
I’m taking a course in Jerusalem in safrut (holy calligraphy) with my grandson, Moshe, age 13. He’s the youngest in the class, and you guessed it — I’m the oldest! It’s at night, and when I nod off, Moshe wakes me with his quill! What pure joy and bliss, I wish it on everyone!”
Shemittah shiurim were given for beginners, experienced learners, and rabbinic groups.
Three guides were published to help English speakers in Israel better understand and keep kashrut: OU Israel Kosher Guide, Yeshiva & Seminary Guide for gap-year students, and OU Israel Passover Guide.
A kashrut course offered to students from Sha’alvim for Women had 35 participants.
This summer, the Jack E. Gindi Oraita Program in Dimona collaborated with NCSY Summer TJJ Action campers. Together, they renovated the Youth Center in Dimona. The mayor of Dimona, Benny Bitton, personally came to thank them for their efforts.
On July 14, OU Israel held a momentous groundbreaking event for the Toni Kohn House Sderot. Jeff and Wendy Kohn and family generously donated $1 million to establish the Toni Kohn House Sderot in memory of their daughter Toni. The Toni Kohn House Sderot will provide traumatized youth with a safe haven where they’ll receive unconditional love and enjoy a reprieve from the chronic stress of terrorist attacks, while receiving support in managing their trauma.
Daniela, 20, first connected with the Pearl & Harold Jacobs Zula Outreach Center when she was 15.
“It was a very uncertain time in my life,” she recalls. “I would drink a lot and just hang out. I was barely able to attend school and at home I had problems that didn’t allow me to stay there. As soon as I walked into the Zula, I got a good feeling - a feeling people call a sense of home, a feeling I never knew.”
“The Zula helped me with a lot of things,” Daniela adds, “especially with feeling a sense of belonging and that there was a place where people truly cared about me.” At the Zula, she was seen for who she truly was.
When Daniela matured she attended the Zula’s Midreshet Zusha program - the Zula’s Midrasha program for young women. She now plans on studying nursing and building the Jewish home she always dreamed of.
What’s Daniela’s biggest takeaway? “The feeling that I’m important, to believe in the good that’s in me, that I can deal with my difficulties and to know that I can ask for help.”