Green Discoveries and Wonder in JerusalemPosted on March 13, 2018
Just arrived home from an awesome program in Israel. The program was a pilot project jointly run by Canadian Friends for Hebrew University and Skilled Volunteers for Israel-age 55 and over.
How do I praise thee, let me count the ways.
The attention that was given to place volunteers in their individual areas of expertise, was second to none.
While I have skill sets in education and visual arts, I chose to volunteer as the master gardener that I am. Team Marla (Marla Gamoran is the executive director for Skilled Volunteers for Israel) did research on horticulture\ gardens and other green spaces. To be noted, this was a first time placement challenge for Skilled Volunteers for Israel.
And, what a success!
Shout out to team Marla for the exceptional and diversified schedule of green site visits arranged. Albeit a initiative program, we agreed to embark on a discovery based schema with an eye to the future.
And, what a success !
Over the course of seven days I visited and talked with the following: a gardener in his youth village, a community council-government co-ordination team, the head of cvs farm for youth at risk, an environmental activist, the Jerusalem city community gardens co-ordinator and at Hebrew University: the Urban Clinic social planning program, Department of Geography and Urban Studies.
With each visit the conversation always included an inquiry about a potential of short term volunteers.
Moreover, Team Marla is generous of spirit. They went beyond the call of duty to open doors for a personal meeting that was outside of the program.
Would I do it again?
The combination of spending mornings on a green dream-so to speak; afternoons listening to talks by top professors of Hebrew University and meals with a delicious group of participants, was perfect.
I vote to change the word ‘pilot’ to ‘repeat’ program.
I joined this trip on a bit of a whim and without many expectations; other than to surprise someone and celebrate their achievement at Canadian Friends of Hebrew University.
- knowledge gained
- sense of fulfillment
- eleven wonderful new friends from other Canadian cities
- an insight into Jerusalem and its ‘green social spaces’.
With love, Elaine