Israel surprises everyone who visits, whether you are a first time visitor or have been before. Students were interviewed during the program to give us some insights.
Friendships go accross school boundaries and the sense of community for participants in Year 10 Israel programs. While this is most true of those on the Emet Israel program, the Y2i Community Day is about extending this to the Jewish Day Schools.
“To Help Counter Anti-Israel and Anti-Semitic Sentiment on Campuses, Increase Teen Trips to Israel”. That is the headline from a recent article on the Jewish Philanthropy website, written by Gideon Shavit. The article says all the evidence points to the success of the teen Israel programs, and now more than ever they are critical.
Programs designed to take young people to Israel are having a significant long-term influence on Jewish continuity. A recent study of the basket of Masa Israel Programs, 'Securing the Jewish Future', by Rosov Consulting (presented to the Jewish Agency), supports the claim. What is particularly important to note about this research is that it focussed on "religiously non-Orthdox individuals". In other words, these are people who didn't identify themselves as being regularly observant Jews prior to going on a Israel program. Masa Israel Journey connects Jewish young adults (ages 18-30) to gap year, study abroad, post-college, and volunteer programs. The evidence suggests similar long term results for the Year 10 Israel programs. The study looks back at previous participants (2008 - 2014) and measures against some key areas including; leadership, volunteering and donations to Israel or Jewish related causes. The fact that participants were 40% less likely to marry non-Jewish partners and place a much greater emphasis on being Jewish is on its own impossible to ignore. Other statistics link long term friendships, a clearer understanding of Israeli life and future journey's to Israel, back to the program. Read a copy of the presentation summary of the report here. Sending our youth on programs to Israel will be a critical pathway to Jewish continuity.Read More
In the summer of 2010 and 2011 two consecutive research projects were conducted on high school age travelers to Israel. The research projects illustrated that over 50% of students were visiting Israel for the first time. Furthermore, up to 75% of participants said price was a high barrier for most of their friends. Finally the research highlighted that less than 1% of participants said they will never return to Israel, and the majority saw them coming back in the next five years. The article reflects how the population that travels to Israel is a great asset for the organized Jewish world. Read the full paper here. Written by Elan Ezrachi PhD, 2011Read More
The iCenter understands that travel to Israel is one of the strongest, most effective means of educating about Israel. The iCenter seeks to understand the existing field of teen Israel travel, in order to determine how most effectively to make a positive impact on the field. In its initial exploration of the field of teen Israel travel, iCenter staff noted that the most basic information about the field was lacking. Determined to make an impact on the field that is driven by data, the iCenter engaged Ramie Arian Consulting to conduct an Environmental Scan of the field of teen Israel travel from North America. That study was carried out over a 4½ month period, from mid-April through late August, 2011. The present summary presents key findings, beginning with an executive overview which is found on the first two pages. Read the full paper here. Written by Ramie Arian, 2012Read More