Saturday, July 27, 2013

Community Week Haifa: Immigration Day

July 24th- Immigration Written by Bramm Watkin The day began with a maagal boker that I led at Beit Miller. We split up into groups and discussed the importance of immigration and the impact it has on us today. This discussion helped to outline the ideas that we would touch upon in the following day. Then we left to go visit a day camp where we played with little children aged 5-6. Although we were expecting Ethiopian kids, a mix up in communication with the camp resulted in us spending our time with Russian immigrant kids instead, but all kids are adorable so no one seemed to care! After many hugs and pictures we took a fifteen minute bus ride to mapilim camp that housed immigrants who came to Israel while it was still under British rule. Here many holocaust survivors stayed on their journey to their homeland. This was their last stop before returning to Israel, a trek very few had succeeded at. At this camp the British held prisoners for up to a year because they had illegally traveled to Israel, yet there was no harm done to them. After an hour tour with an informational movie, we ate lunch outside and mingled with other programs that happen to be touring the same day. Then we made our way to Yemin Orde which was a youth village which stands as a boarding school for immigrants to Israel whose parents cannot afford schooling for them. We then toured the campus and got to hear Worko's story of his immigration to Israel from Ethiopia. Worko is one of our fellows from Yemin Orde. Next our tour guide brought us down to a grassy area and made us Ethiopian coffee. This was an example of the traditions immigrants bring along with them when they go to a new country. Next our maagal lila took place outside and it was a continuation of the discussion in the morning. We touched upon the implications of the feelings and characteristics specific to immigration and how they can be applied to our life. This discussion helped to open our eyes to the implications of what we learn from immigration. Next we had dinner and following our meal at Yemin Orde's dining hall Liana and Nitsan led a text analysis program. This program helped us understand the importance of being a guest or a host and what the Torah has to say about it. During this day we experienced both the physical aspects of immigration that are seen in our daily lives as well as the morals we learn from day to day experiences.

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