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If you go Down to the Woods Today

Thumbs up ... having a great time. Story and photos by Nina Zuck

Our once-a-year get together of all four Students Build a Community projects in Netanya took place at the start of the Pesach holidays when150 children, 40 students, 3 coordinators and several ESRA volunteers met in the Ilanot Woods south of Pardessiya for a day of fun and excitement.The Green Network* which joins us in many of our activities in the communities, took part in this program too.

The kids were divided into four groups and were each given time at the different 'stations' in the woods including sports,where they had great fun with tug-of-war competitions, soccer games and just running around. There were short hikes into the woods which are part of a really lovely nature reserve.

The program began with a circus juggler provided by the goodwill of the ESRA Netanya branch. He had the kids eating out of the palm of his hand with juggling lessons, or hula hoops, huge bubble-blowing loops and many other surprises. His grand finale was a juggling act with fire (not to be tried at home!) which literally had this huge group of kids sitting with mouths agape, not moving…….a circus feat in itself. 

                                       Get together . . . enjoying matzah and having fun in Ilanot Woods 

The day ended with a very small Pesach Seder consisting of a Pesach quiz, and a feast of matzah and chocolate with hardboiled eggs to wash it all down and remind us of the Exodus from Egypt.

Kudos go to our students who are, this year, an amazing team of young adults working together with their 'kids' and making sure they get what they need, both academically and socially; to our coordinators of the projects who make these events happen and of course to our ESRA volunteers and members who are so involved with the projects.

Nina Zuck is head of ESRA's community projects.

The Green Network is an organization for sustainability. It aims to make change in education, in society and in the environment. It was established by the Heschel Center for Sustainability at Tel Aviv University and works closely with the Ministries of Education and Environment. 



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