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Published Monday, April 4, 2016

Youth To Israel Adventure

By Deborah Coltin

Pictured (l-r): Rachael Weiss and Sydney Faulkner, Swampscott; Naomi Weisman, Beverly; Jesse Schwed, Marblehead; Amy Freed, Danvers, and Kayla Fabry, Beverly.

More than 150 teens and parents in the Lappin Charitable Foundation’s 2016 Youth to Israel Adventure (Y2I) attended the third pre-trip educational meeting, featuring Matan Zamir, Israel’s Deputy Consul General to New England, followed by a moving documentary about Dr. Felix Zandman, Holocaust survivor and great Jewish achiever.

Before beginning his presentation, Mr. Zamir presented Sara Quinn, 2015 Y2I alumna and Georgetown High School senior, a certificate from the Israeli Consulate in recognition of a recent paper she wrote for her English class about the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) Movement, successfully making the case that at its root, BDS is immoral and anti-Semitic.

Mr. Zamir excited teens about their July trip to Israel, focusing his talk on three areas: amazing ancient sites teens will see, Israeli high tech innovation that is used worldwide, and Israelis themselves. As a former Deputy Chief of Mission at the Israeli Consulate in Mumbai, Mr. Zamir explained that people in India are in awe of Israel’s accomplishments, considering both countries achieved statehood within a year of each other. 

“In less than 70 short years, Israel went from oranges to Apples,” said Mr. Zamir. Jaffa oranges were Israel’s main export in 1948. In 2015, Apple chose Israel as the place to open its largest center outside of its home base because of Israel’s high tech scene. Israelis will work on Apple’s flash memory and 3D technology.

2016 Y2I, a CJP-supported program, will depart for Israel on July 3rd with 104 teens, 31 teens more than last year. The trip has been lengthened by two days to include more Israel advocacy training by internationally acclaimed pro-Israel advocacy organizations Stand With Us and Honest Reporting, providing teens with critically important Israel advocacy skills they will use during their college years and beyond.

“Our teens will be the most effective ambassadors for Israel in their high schools and on college campuses,” said Robert I. Lappin, Y2I founder and funder and Lappin Foundation President. “Y2I has developed into an outstanding teen educational travel and leadership program, providing teens with a life-changing Jewish experience and unique opportunities for personal, educational and spiritual growth,” added Lappin.

Deborah Coltin is the executive director of the Robert I. Lappin Charitable Foundation.

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