Group 3: L’takayn Olam

July 23, 2013

The group started their final day at Yad Lekashish, a non-profit based in Jerusalem that provides employment and social services to over 300 elderly artisans. Then, they went for a final and emotional visit at the Kotel. From there, they went  to Machane Yehuda open market to buy last minute goodies. They headed back to base to pack and prepare for their final banquet dinner. This evening, they shared memories of everything they have done and accomplished on their incredible journey this summer. At the end of their night, they loaded the buses and headed to the airport. It was a sad goodbye but we know that Group 3 had a fantastic summer and we look forward to them returning to Israel soon!

Monday, August 1st

Last night the group enjoyed their final banquet. During the banquet, they gave out awards and gave presents to the staff. They received their group t-shirts and group photo and then spent their last few hours together sharing memories. At 2 am they loaded the buses and left for the airport. We know that Group 3 had an amazing summer and look forward to seeing them in Israel again soon!

Sunday, July 31st

The group began their day with a visit to Yad Lakashish, Lifeline for the Old. Yad LaKashish provides a creative work environment and invaluable support services, giving the elderly a sense of purpose and community as well as financial assistance. They then had time for some last minute shopping on Ben Yehuda St. and at the Machane Yehuda Shuk. This afternoon they walked to the Western Wall for the last time this trip and davened Mincha there. They headed back to the Fuchsberg center to pack and prepare for their banquet dinner and final programs, during which the group came together to hang out and share memories of everything they have done and accomplished on their incredible journey this past summer.

Friday, July 29th

Today was the day group 3 explored “New Jerusalem.” The group visited the promenade and Ramat Rachel and spoke about borders before and after the ’67 war. At ammunition Hill the group heard about the fierce battle that took place during the six-day war and then headed to Mount Herzl. This mountain serves not only as the Israel Defense Forces’ official military cemetery but also as the burial site for prominent Zionists, Israeli politicians and those figures that greatly influenced the development of the state. They stopped at the graves of Herzl, Yitchak Rabin and Michael Levin among others. When they got back to the Fuchsberg center, they had time to prepare for their final Shabbat in Israel which will be spent together with groups 2, 6 and 7.

Thursday, July 28th

This morning the group planted trees in Yaar Aminadav, JNF forest and each USYer dedicated their tree to someone special in their lives. They then headed to Jerusalem and after lunch they visited Yad Vashem, Israel’s National Holocaust Museum. There they had a very moving tour. Next, the USYers visited Mount Herzl. This mountain serves not only the Israel Defense Forces’ official military cemetery but also as the burial site for prominent Zionists, Israeli politicians and those figures who greatly influenced the development of the state. They stopped at the graves of Herzl, Yoni Netanyahu and Michael Levin among others. After dinner the group enjoyed a group program prepared by their staff.

Wednesday, July 27th

This morning the group volunteered at Hill 16- an outpost overlooking the road to Jerusalem which was developed by USY & Nativ students over the years. There they helped cut all the pine tree branches that blocked the way and cleaned up the area. They ate lunch under the trees, played the guitar and sang songs together.  The group then headed to Misilat Tzion where they cooled off from the hot day with a swim at the pool. After dinner they watched a movie and then went out on a short hike in Nes Harim.

Tuesday, July 26th

The group participated in a special project today which included an archeological dig at the Adulam Park together with a group of IDF soldiers and a group of developmentally challenged students from a nearby school. The whole day was very meaningful and the fact that the group got to volunteer together with other Israelis, young and old, truly enhanced the experience. This evening they had a chance to reflect on their journey till now while playing fun and creative drama games.

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