Sorkin Youth Trip to Israel
December 19-31, 2018.
When he was President of the Beth El, Jerry Sorkin (z”l) had a vision to establish a trip to Israel for the Beth El Religious School Confirmation Class. When he passed away, a committee came together to determine ways in which Jerry’s legacy could be honored. The advice to the committee was to “think big,” the way Jerry did. After much thought and discussion, the committee determined that the biggest and best way to honor Jerry would be to develop his idea and make it a reality.
Jerry’s vision to send the Confirmation Class students to Israel highlights the importance our community places on sending our youth to Israel.
The Sorkin Youth Trip to Israel is a culminating experience for Beth El youth completing the Religious School program. While the first year will be open to two grades, future trips will be open to all students in the confirmation class, and it will be a Beth El experience. Students will spend time before they go planning and preparing for the experience, and they will bring their experiences back to our community by presenting their stories and perspectives in discussion forums to congregants upon their return.
To make this trip possible for all interested students, the synagogue will subsidize approximately half the total cost of the trip, including air fare. Through the generosity of community members, as well as Jerry’s friends and family members, Congregation Beth El has been able to establish a fund for this purpose and hopes to continue to make this trip possible for years to come.
The itinerary for each year will be designed by a Beth El trip leader working with a professional Israeli guide, other Beth El leaders and clergy, parents and the students themselves. It is most important that the students themselves participate and help customize the trip to make it unique and something in which they will take ownership.
Fundamentally, the trip is designed to strengthen the connection the students have to each other, as well as to strengthen their personal connections to Israel. Participants will visit multiple locations including the Golan Heights, Galilee, Tel Aviv, Judean Hills, Negev, the Dead Sea, and Jerusalem, and they will experience a variety of other activities together and with Israeli youth. The tour is designed to be physically active and intellectually engaging.
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