(October 20, 2020, Jerusalem, JNS Wire) Masa Israel Journey (“Masa”) Fellows are helping address Israel’s health crisis amid the coronavirus pandemic. More than 25% of Masa Fellows are volunteering in various sectors coping with the pandemic, in adherence with Israel’s Ministry of Health and safety guidelines.
500 MasaGap Fellows are volunteering with Magen David Adom to organize coronavirus testing kits for distribution across the country. Through this project, 55,000 kits have already been created and Masa Fellows continue to organize thousands more.
University of Delaware pre-med student, Raquel Levit, recently arrived in Israel for her gap year. “The experience is incredible. The more time we have spent volunteering, the more meaningful it has become for me,” said Levit, a first-time visitor in Israel. “I’ve come to understand how much power exists here and the valuable impact we’re making. This volunteer opportunity has given me hope and strength.”
MasaCareer Fellows, who are part of the Tlalim Culinary Arts program, have joined the staff of Beit Rafael (Raphael House) to distribute food to the needy in Eilat. Each day, the group of 50 Fellows, build a menu, cook, and organize hot meals for the vulnerable people who live in the city that has been forced to shut down activities due to coronavirus restrictions. Hundreds of more Fellows, across Masa’s various program segments, are volunteering on agricultural farms throughout Israel to help reinforce Israel’s food supply.
Masa Fellows are also supporting Israel’s education and medical sectors, which have been impacted by COVID-19. 160 Masa Israel Teaching Fellows have arrived in Israel prepared to teach students in small groups or online, so that children in Israel’s periphery can stay safe while continuing to learn. Additionally, 60 Fellows from the Masa Doctors program, in partnership with Israel Experience and the Technological College in Be’er Sheva, have obtained their medical licenses and are ready to intern in Israeli hospitals and medical offices as the country’s healthcare system is overloaded.
Masa Acting CEO Ofer Gutman said, “Masa Fellows exemplify the Jewish value of mutual responsibility. They’ve come to Israel to gain opportunities for personal and professional growth and they are standing up to help our communities in times of crisis. These young and bright minds from around the world are coming together to help address some of society’s greatest challenges while also building a more connected community.”
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