Dear parents, shnattim, bogrim, bogrot, communities and friends shalom rav,

We hope you are well.


Another week is coming to an end, leaving only one more week for our group in Tel- Aviv. This was also the last week of full time volunteering, as next week we will have a summary of this period, and two days for a special activity! The group is in higher energy, despite the heat and challenges, and we hope those energies will only increase towards their chofesh (break).  

We keep hearing great things from Nancye and Bec, who are currently leading on Netzer UK and Netzer Germany. In a short period of time, the whole group will reunite back in Jerusalem, before heading for their last part of the year in Kibbutz Lotan. Will be great having the group in our corridors at Beit- Shmuel again.

Starting tonight we celebrate the new month of Av- a very meaningful month, that holds traumatic events in Jewish history, and also the Hebrew valentine's day- the day of love. May we have a lot of loving moments, appreciating what we have, spreading love to all, and make this place better.

+ The Southern Corner

Update by Rochelle B.

It's been another tiring, sweaty but immensely rewarding week in Tel Aviv. We only have one more week left and the baby sitters are getting emotional about saying good bye to their tiny Eritrean friends, as a babysitter myself I know that the connection we've made with these children is something we won't ever forget, the love I feel with every hug from them and the joy I get watching them play makes it awful to even imagine having to leave them so soon.

But not all is tears and snotty children, we also have Ella Sandler back! Finally from her what seems like a month long hiatus from Shnat and soon we'll get to see our long lost kvutsa members Nancye Noa and Bec! All is looking up for us especially since we've been treated to an amazing yafo welcoming with 5 phones being stolen.

We'd like to say another thank you to the sandlers for taking us out for dinner we really appreciate all of the parents constant love and check ins can't wait for the Tates dinner on Thursday!

Image here

A poem by Tamara R.

Tel Aviv’s roads must be heated from a gigantuan underground stove the heat chokes us, blinds us, soaks our clothes, then steals our sweat, while the sun innocently hides behind the empty sky the ocean fights the heat with its choppy breeze, but within hours it is overcome, the waves blaspheme against their lunar lover to embrace the sun, with the cheek of their betrayal they become a salty bath of stinging jellies and plastic and fish who bite scabs off ankles, thirsty for blood like we are for water when we finally emerge.

The heat sears our bare skin, turns it pink with blood and brown and gold with sand the steamy pavement kisses our calves as we march, brave, sticky, laden with string backpacks and ice block bottles, across the concrete desert.

The flies and the mosquitoes are as bold as the men and the buses swim like schools of fish in grimy rivers, choking a vertical city, boulevards and skyscrapers and sun hotels and start up office blocks towering over too-old terraces, almost as high as the seventh floor of the central bus station car parks almost as low as its nuclear bomb shelter, its caves of bats and refugees, as Eritrean children napping on a plastic floor a horizontal city, the avenues the boardwalks the pavement the rows and rows of warm peaches and nectarines and grapes and watermelon that line the lanes of hacarmel and hatikva and the endless junkyard treasures of yafo, and the green, floodlit lawns of levinsky park, neve sha'anan’s communal backyard

Tel Aviv is a limb of veins, blue and calm in the middle-aged north, quiet and resigned a young woman on a bike in the centre, tanned and strong and who knows where she’s going but she’s pedaling fast an old man and the sea in Yafo, sun bleached and grey and stooped and charming a standoffish bright youth in the south, loving and hating in the same running breath, red and green and flashing and heart stopping and overflowing.

The spring hill, the garden city, the white city, the grey, black, dust city where Rothschild bumped into Allenby, a tense meeting, a rocky reunion tel aviv is a chanukkah party where the eldest child is showered with gifts while the other looks on, misbehaving and quiet and salame met levinsky once and abandoned him for the scenic route to Bat Yam lower on the map, the streets get less green, but the stove heats them up all the same the sunset city, the sunrise city never ostentatious, a smear of pink and gold and blue and yellow and grey, glaring off the grey concrete that fills the place of beige Jerusalem stone in the depths of my irises in tel aviv I look down to avoid the broken glass and the electric wires and the stop-lights in tel aviv I look up to see the moon and the stars and the windows of the high-rises like pores in flawless skin and the sun in my eyes, blinking away salt, exhaust fumes, air conditioner drippings, and the gas-stove air.

Image here

+ Israel Update

Don't let the core curriculum bill pass
Dear reader,

Israel's biggest natural resource is its people. Israel is the "Startup Nation" because individual creativity, intelligence and a knack for improvisation have consistently been lined up with broad access to modern education and opportunities.

Unfortunately, PM Netanyahu's government is about to deprive thousands of Israeli boys of the opportunity to become part of the Startup Nation - or the Israeli workforce for that matter - by deciding to waive the enforcement of core curriculum studies such as English, math, science and civics in Haredi (ultra-Orthodox) schools.

It's hard to imagine a more ill-conceived and short sighted decision. Giving Haredi schools a broad exemption from the law that requires all state-funded elementary schools to teach basic subjects such as English and math will keep thousands of Haredi boys uneducated, impoverished and unable to find gainful employment outside of their own communities.

Core curriculum studies are the key to breaking the vicious cycle of low employment rates and the staggering poverty rate (47%) that characterizes Israel's ultra-Orthodox community. For years, economists have been warning that Haredi men must enter the Israeli workforce to ensure Israel's economic sustainability. Many ultra-Orthodox parents want their children to study English and math and, as reported in Haaretz, last week, hundreds signed a petition demanding the establishment of ultra-Orthodox schools that teach the core curriculum. These parents are our allies and could be the key to solving this issue.

When the new school year starts next month, a third of all Jewish first-graders in Israel will be studying in Haredi schools. Please join me in writing to Naftali Bennett, Israel's Minister of Education, to tell him we believe all Israeli children should be given the opportunity to learn key subjects that will enable them to take part in the Israeli workforce and pursue a higher education.

Israel cannot afford another generation of boys who will be unable to identify the “enter” key that enters them into the modern world.


Email Israel's Minister of Education, Naftali Bennett, to Demand Action
Naftali Bennet, Israel's Minister of Education, can influence whether the core curriculum bill passes. Take a moment to write to Naftali Bennett to demand the core curriculum bill not be passed into legislation.

+ International

Here are two major events taking place nest year- it would be lovely seeing you here with us!

[Join Us in Jerusalem!
May 17-20, 2017
CONNECTIONS offers deep learning, meaningful leadership development, and engaging events that will inspire Progressive Jews from all facets of communal life - leaders, educators, volunteers, activists, professionals, students, rabbis and more - with workshops, seminars, worship services, tours and much more. Pre-convention programs begin May 11, 2017. Full listings available in September.

Learn More & Pre-Register Today!

Set against the dynamic backdrop of Jerusalem, CONNECTIONS comprises an array of seminars, tours, services and workshops that will honor the historical milestones from our Zionist and Progressive history over the past 200 years, while exploring the innovative ways Klal Yisrael and Progressive Judaism have evolved ever since.

CONNECTIONS is the international conference of the World Union for Progressive Judaism (WUPJ), the global organization representing 1.8 million Progressive, Reform and Liberal Jews in 50 countries around the world.

Beutel Leadership Seminar
February 16 - 26, 2017

Sharpen your leadership skills with the World Union for Progressive Judaism! Don't miss your chance to apply for the Beutel Seminar in Jerusalem 2017.

Join Reform leaders from across the globe
to strengthen and sharpen your leadership skills and generate positive change for your congregation, community, school, board and more.

The Program:

Combines site visits, discussion groups, training sessions and lectures to examine challenges and provide tools for achievement
Examines the lifecycle of a congregation, strategic planning for community growth, young adult engagement, building local partnerships, and more.
Explores critical issues facing Israel and the Jewish People such as how the voice of our Jewish tradition expresses itself in today's world, strengthening Progressive Judaism in Israel and beyond, and working toward peace and justice.

View the full schedule here.

The Faculty:
Taught by accomplished scholars and educators in the fields of Jewish education, leadership and management, and Jewish history, alongside rabbis and activists from Progressive Jewish organizations.

The Location:
The Saltz International Education Center is based at Beit Shmuel-Mercaz Shimshon, headquarters of the World Union for Progressive Judaism in Jerusalem.

Learn More & Apply Here

Connect with international peers. Cultivate your leadership abilities. Strengthen your congregations and communities through our Progressive Jewish framework for educational, professional and personal growth.

Register Today

+ The Weekly Portion

In the Parashat Hashavu'a corner, we will direct you to the World Union for Progressive Judaism's column "Torah from around the world", where each week another Progressive Rabbi writes about the weekly portion. This is the week that the rest of the world catches up to Israel’s Torah reading, so below are 2 links for both Parshiyot- – matot - masei

Wishing you all Shabbat Shalom, 

Lior and the Netzer staff



* You receive the weekly update directly from Netzer Olami, as we hope to have more direct and open communication with all our partners in this program*

* if you think there is anyone else that should receive this weekly updates, please send me their details*

* If you wish to write a column/ corner/ once off, please email me *

*As always, the local Netzer Branch is always there for you as well *


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