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Jewish Federations-Supported Programs Sending Young Jews to Israel

Bringing young Jews to spend time in Israel is a vital element of the mission of The Jewish Federations of North America to strengthen ties between Israel and the Jewish communities in the US and Canada. We are proud to provide ways for young Jews to enhance their leadership skills, explore their personal Jewish identity, travel the country and gain a deep understanding of Israel and the North American Jewish community. These journeys are even more meaningful because they bring together peers with diverse backgrounds but common ideals to take part in active adventures that make connections to the past, present and future of the Jewish state.

The Jewish Federations manage or fund an array of great projects, including Taglit-Birthright, MASA Israel and LAPID, as well as the new SULAM project. The people travelling to Israel on these programs are not just going on a trip, but a journey of leadership and service throughout the Jewish state. Vital to these programs are their sense of purpose, guaranteeing the participants an amazing experience as well as a heightened appreciation and connection to their Jewish identity.

Some local Federations also offer matching funds for Israel youth experiences through the Passport to Israel incentive savings program. 

Taglit-Birthright Israel: Taglit-Birthright Israel provides the gift of first time, peer group, 10-day educational trips to Israel for Jewish young adults ages 18 to 26. Taglit-Birthright Israel's founders created this program to send thousands of young Jewish adults from all over the world to Israel as a gift in order to diminish the growing division between Israel and Jewish communities around the world; to strengthen the sense of solidarity among world Jewry; and to strengthen participants' personal Jewish identity and connection to the Jewish people.

The gift of the trips is being provided by Jewish Federations and other partners including private philanthropists through The Birthright Israel Foundation; the people of Israel through the Government of Israel; Keren Hayesod and the Jewish Agency for Israel.
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MASA Israel Journey: MASA enables young Jews from all over the world to spend a semester to a year in Israel on any of over 160 programs. MASA is a college and post-college experience that intensifies engagement with Israeli and Jewish life for the more than 10,000 young adults who participate annually in individualized 5- to 12-month study/volunteer/work programs from an expansive menu of structured opportunities.

MASA  is a project of the Government of Israel and Jewish communities, represented by the Jewish Agency for Israel and its partners, JFNA and Keren Hayesod.
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Lapid high school in Israel programLAPID: The LAPID coalition for high school age programs in Israel brings more than 12,000 students to Israel each year for high-quality summer and school-year programs, through a diverse consortium of 27 academic and leading Jewish communal youth program providers. Lapid, the Hebrew word for "torch," was founded on the concept that a strong relationship with Israel begins with a meaningful Israel educational experience and is vital to developing and fostering collective Jewish identity in youth. Lapid is one of the primary organizations bringing youth to Israel from abroad.

The Lapid framework is managed by the Federation-funded Jewish Agency for Israel, with the support of the Israeli government.
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SULAM: The new SULAM initiative of the Federation-supported Jewish Agency for Israel will create two- to four-month programs promoting the value of volunteer work and social justice in the context of an enriched Jewish-Israeli experience for 18- to 26-year olds.

Passport to Israel:
Passport to Israel is an incentive savings program which helps provide students with necessary funds to have a life-long, unforgettable educational Israel experience. If you or someone in your family is considering youth trips to Israel, check to see if your local Federation offers this program, which may provide matching funds to be used for approved Israel experiences.