For many teens, the last thing on their summer wish list is to be part of a learning program. After all, school is out so let’s enjoy some time in the sun.
However, this year, summer vacation took on a higher meaning for 17 public school students who were inspired to expand on their spiritual journey by spending time in the Holy Land of Eretz Yisroel.
After an intense and exciting semester at CHAZAQ’s JWave fellowship program in conjunction with Olami, Rabbis Avrohom Walkin and David Delman, renowned for their dedication in youth outreach, gave their students an experience of a lifetime.
From daily learning at Yeshiva Ohr Someach to visiting all the historic and holy sites of Jerusalem and Chevron, to camel back riding and hiking in the Judean desert, the trip truly was one of the most meaningful and memorable experiences for all the attendees.
For one student, however, the trip was extra special. Daniel Yusupov’s mother tragically passed away several years ago and he had not yet merited visiting her gravesite in Jerusalem. Although he is only 16 years old and didn’t officially qualify for the Chazaq trip, Chazaq Director Rabbi Ilan Meirov made an exception and granted him permission to join due to his dedication in attending daily Chazaq Jwave programs.
At a visit to the Har Hamenuchot cemetery in Jerusalem, the Chazaq staff were able to track down his mother’s grave and Daniel prayed fervently by her resting place, a moment he will cherish forever. He then spoke to his peers and implored them to honor their parents while they have the opportunity and to never take them for granted. Everyone was truly moved by this special moment of connection.
As the boys returned from their Israel trip, Daniel transferred from public school to Yeshiva Ezra Academy, as he now embarks on a new journey in his young life.
On the girl’s end, 15 CHAZAQ fellowship students enjoyed trips to upstate New York and Miami Florida. Mrs. Amit Yaghoubi, head of the Girls fellowship program, built a special connection with all her students and helped introduce them to many new concepts in Judaism while enjoying many beautiful attractions. As the summer came to a close, 7 of the Chazaq fellowship students completed their senior year in public school and transferred to seminary in Eretz Yisroel. These 7 students join the over 1,200 public school students of all ages who have transferred from public school to Yeshiva since Chazaq started their “No child left behind” initiative prior to the 2017 school year.
“We are blessed to have a staff that is fully dedicated to our afterschool programs”, says Chazaq CEO Rabbi Yaniv Meirov. “And they work tirelessly to guide these students and their famileis to explore the option of yeshiva education.”
“Baruch Hashem, we have had tremendous success but it’s only the beginning”, he says with a smile.
To register to one of CHAZAQ’s 13 Sunday school locations for children, or daily programs for teens, please contact Chazaq or visit www.chazaq.org.
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