We were thrilled in February to welcome another delegation of new staff members from the United Israel Jewish Appeal (UJIA) in the UK who came to visit the Akko Educators’ Kibbutz to understand our unique community and to get a glimpse into some of the work we are doing.
Six of the UJIA’s new staff members came up to Akko where they were given a tour of the progress at our future home in the heart of the city. They were fascinated to hear about our innovative model of combining cooperative living with dynamic educational activism and how our relocation project will serve both aspects of this mission in Akko.
For many members of the delegation it was their first time in Akko and first time meeting an educators’ community and they were very curious to understand how it all worked. In particular they wanted to see what sort of impact we are having in Akko. They learned about several of our major projects working with children, youth and adults in the city, including the Shared Society Center, the Ogen Club for At-Risk Youth, the Akko Jam, and the Advot Center, each of which seeks to provide a specialized answer to various social, economic and cultural needs of the people of Akko.
They then met with two locals who are active members in Word-for-Word, our adult bilingual and cross-cultural program, and watched a short video about the Ogen Youth Club and the unique and crucial role that the bond created between counselors and the at-risk youth they work with plays in their lives. These experiences gave the UJIA staffers personal insight into our method of engaging a broad and diverse cross-section of the population to realize their potential to make a difference in their own lives and to come together to take responsibility for the life of the wider community. The staffers left hopeful for the future of Akko and keen to tell the story of the Akko Educator’s Kibbutz to the members of their community in the UK.
This latest visit is the most recent in a long line of visits that we are honored to have hosted from our long-term friends and partners in the UJIA and the Jewish community of the UK. It is this kind of bond between communities that will tie together and give strength to the Jewish people around the world for generations to come.