JOLT Israel
NCSY JOLT Israel- Our Last Night In Israel Together As A JOLT Israel Family

My Dear NCSY JOLT Israel Family,


It’s Monday night here in Artzeinu and we fly back to North America tomorrow. I can’t believe our trip has come to a close. I feel like we were just meeting in JFK and getting to know each other but alas we are here in Kibbutz Chafetz Chayim, sitting together and talking, reminiscing about the summer and what an amazing time we all had. Before I share my final thoughts I want to tell you about Shabbos and the past two days.


Shabbos was beautiful but it seemed like it flew by. We began with our famous, pre-shabbos picture taking. This was followed by a beautiful davening. We danced and we sang and we wished that the moment would never end. After davening we ate the Seudah together and then made our way down to the activity room where we had an awesome Oneg. Jed and Davida were the Chassidishe Rebbe and Rebbitzen and taught the kids songs, Grammen and did Shtick. It was an awesome evening. Shabbos day, we davened, had Kiddush, lunch and assorted Shiurim throughout the day. As it started to get dark we took our chairs and sat outside in a circle for our last ebbing. The singing was loud and strong and the emotion that Yoel poured out when he spoke to us was emotional and stirring. We ended Shabbos with our famous JOLT Israel Havdalah and chilled out with a pizza Melaveh Malka.


Sunday was a great day and an important day. It was really a day of tying up loose ends.  We began our day at Givat HaTachmoshet (Ammunition hill). Our tour began with a movie of that battle and why it is such an important part of Israeli history. Then we moved up to the trenches and I spoke a little more in depth about the strategic relevance of the place and one particular piece of history that signified Achdus among the soldiers. After we finished we had an awesome lunch from Burgers Bar and then made our way to Kever Rachel where we davened Mincha. After Mincha we went back to the Haas Promenade and I spoke about Rachel crying for her children as they went into Galus. We came full circle and I asked the kids to think about the one area that they think that they changed the most in. Memories are important but with time they fade. If, however, the trip truly changed their lives (which I know it did), then labeling how their lives where enhanced will help them make the trip part of their lives forever. After we spoke, we loaded the buses and made our way to the Hertzel museum. It was excellent and I think left us all with important things to think about.


Today we gave the kids free time to buy last minute things and then said goodbye to the Kotel. We had our final banquet and heard from some amazing kids, the advisors and saw a beautiful movie that Davida put together. It was moving and left us all with the same thought. JOLT Israel was the best summer of these kids’ lives. But I want to add something here. It was also the best for us as well. The entire staff echo’s the same feelings as the kids. We did something amazing this summer. We all created something amazing! The chemistry of our staff was unparalleled. We literally felt like we were all part of one big family. There was no fighting, no issues, nothing except for the highest level of respect for one another. That love and respect trickles down to the kids and they mimic it. Our staff were true role models in every sense of the word. I am so proud to be associated with each and every one of them. They are truly the best of the best and we are all the lucky recipients of this reality.


We return back to our respective houses tomorrow but this summer will forever be in my heart and I know it will forever remain in the heart of all of our staff and our kids.

I want to thank a few people who made this summer possible. But before I do that I must say “Hodu LaHashem Ki Tov, Ki Leolam Chasdo” Everything that we had this summer was a function of the constant Shefa Bracha of Hashem. I also want to thank Nechama for all her hard work and attention to the details that made this program as smooth as it was, she is the best partner in the world! David Cutler and NCSY Summer including but not limited to Elliot Tanzman, Amy Mauskopf, Rachelli Schwartz and the entire team thank you for everything you do to continue to help make JOLT Israel the success it is. We ALL share the great success of this program! To everyone at Masa Yehudi, you guys are rock stars. Thank you for all of the help planning and making sure we always had what we needed. Yoel for being the best tour guide in the world. Alon for being the best logistics person, medic and guard! To Ben Book my Assistant Director, Jed Zaslow my Director of education, Yonatan Glicksman, Hannah Backer, Davida Respler and Rachel Fried- Thank you, thank you, thank you. Words can’t express how amazing you are, but the smiles on these kids’ faces the entire summer speaks volumes. The fact that we had OVER 80% of our kids involved in chavrusah learning is remarkable, we created a Tehillim group chat and completed Tehillim four times this summer! That is your collective legacy.


Thank you to the parents for all of the amazing and beautiful letters that you have sent me over the summer. I can tell you that they meant the world to me and I appreciate you taking the time to send the thank you notes! I’m always happy to receive them and as I explained they helped bolster our resolve and the good work that we are trying to do from our end. I’m also happy to receive some last minutes ones ;-)


I end with one more thing. Just because the summer is over, please don’t be strangers. If I can ever do anything for you or be of help to you in any way at all, please do not hesitate to reach out. You have my email address and my cell phone number. If you need me, be in touch with me. After five weeks, as you can imagine, I have become very close with each child on the program, I want to see each and every one of them be successful in everything they do. Any way that I can help facilitate that success would be my honor.


I end with a Bracha. May we all be Zoche to have only Nachas and Mazal from our children. May we all have good health and happiness and may we merit to see the day that our children grow into the people that we daven for them to become. May we return to Artzeinu HaKedosha quickly and may we merit to dance together in the holy streets of Yerushalayim!


With much love,



Rabbi Dr. Noam Weinberg

Director, NCSY JOLT Israel

Visit JOLT Israel

© 2024 NCSY. All Rights Reserved.

Facebook Instagram instagram