A Skilled Volunteer’s Experience in Israel

Posted on March 1, 2018

It’s Purim in Israel and my wife Heather and I are here. Walking the streets of Jerusalem is a real treat. Imagine Halloween in North America where you see young people in particular in costumes.

Although we have been “Skilled Volunteers” before, this experience is very different as there are 12 of us ( a group endeavour) and we are here in partnership with the Canadian Friends of Hebrew University in a pilot initiative to combine volunteering with learning and some touring.  The program has been working out beyond expectations.

The talented Skilled Volunteers for Israel staff are on the ground here in Jerusalem.  We have working with us Terry Hendin, our Jerusalem Volunteer Coordinator, Judy Gray and even Marla Gamoran, herself, the organization’s founder and Executive Director who is here as well.   “Our cup truly runneth over.”

The organizations and Hebrew University units who welcome us into personalized placements have been happy with us and my sense is that our group is overjoyed with our experience. Our success has occurred as a result of and only as a result of the expertise, the thought and the outstanding effort made by our Skilled Volunteers for Israel and Hebrew University teams. For example, the learning programmes at the university and opportunities to work with University students and with the elderly at Melabev have been most gratifying to each of us. From my personal observations and the smiles on the faces of the Israelis with whom I’m interacting, this experience is an unparalleled reward.

Ron Hoffman

Ron Hoffman working with Hebrew University student

The professors who have spoken to us have covered current politics through nanotechnology. Who would have thought we could learn so much from how a Mosquito smells!

Speaking of smells, we can hardly resist the aromas of the Jerusalem delicacies on the street from every restaurant, and the food itself has been outstanding.

Our bodies and our Jewish souls have been well fed.

Much more to come. L’hitraot!
Ron
A Skilled Volunteer from Canada.