JValley Blog

Day 1 - My Future, My Hands

By Daniel Vainish, author of "Life in Tel Aviv"

Hey everyone! Happy to begin my first post from Israel already! I’ve decided to create this blog to document my experiences here. Writing helps me to gain more from my life and adds depth to what I do. Don’t hesitate to provide feedback …

Preparing for the unexpected

By Jyl Jurman

As California residents we are all too aware of the impact of unexpected moments. Earthquakes, one of the many naturally occurring tragedies that can occur, come without alerts or warnings. While our friends in other areas may get impending news of tsunamis, snowstorms and t…

Why choose a community Birthright trip

Last year I hosted my first Yom Kippur Break Fast. I was so excited for the evening, not just because it was my chance to play "grown up Jew", but also because I had a very special guest: my friend Hayley who I met on my Birthright trip in 2005. I hadn't seen Hayley since our trip; she had b…

Food rescue

By Susan Gavens

“Food Rescue”, these were the first word we heard from Paul Leiba, Director of Development, Leket Israel. We know that Federation dollars rescue people, but now we are being introduced to the concept of rescuing food to help the hungry population of Israel. We didn’t…

How does one say "thank you" to a true hero?

By Michelle Nathanson

Going to Israel at the start of the ground war created a great deal of anxiety for me about traveling. It's a horrible feeling, especially when everyone else seems gung-ho. But I pushed myself for a couple reasons. First, I want my family to know and love Israel. If …