There are many ways for an American teen to get to Israel. One of the best is to go with a group of other teens from the same community. Together, they’ll experience the magic of Israel while they build ties with one another. Get started in 6 Easy Steps.
JCC Maccabi Israel is a non-denominational program dedicated to introducing Jewish teens to all that’s great about Israel—its culture, its history, and its people. JCC Maccabi Israel is a project of two partners; JCC Association and Maccabi World Union. JCC Association is the continental umbrella organization for the Jewish Community Center Movement, which was started in 1854 and includes more than 350 JCCs, YM-YWHAs, and camp sites in the U.S. and Canada. Building on the 100 years of experience and the success of programs across North America, with JCC Maccabi Israel, we know your teens will have an unforgettable journey.
Our 6 Educational Themes
Each JCC Maccabi Israel program is embedded with our 6 educational themes. These themes are:
1. L’dor v’dor (from generation to generation): Understanding our past in order to build our future
2. Kehillah (community): The importance of strengthening our Jewish community and making connections
3. Mifgashim (connections): Creating meaningful dialogue between North American and Israeli teenagers
4. Manhigut (leadership): Learning values and gaining skills that will help our teens become future leaders in our communities
5. Ruach (spirit): Judaism and spirituality – a pluralistic approach toward our culture
6. Gvanim (diversity): Explore the diversity and complexity of Israeli society and its people
We at JCC Maccabi Israel are committed to providing each and every participant with a memorable Israel experience. The key to achieving this is recruiting the most devoted, determined, responsible, enthusiastic, creative and sensitive staff members to our team. Our staff is friendly, knowledgeable and passionate about teens and Israel. They are experienced and work with teens on a regular basis. Each Israeli staff member undergoes thorough interviews and an intensive training program to prepare for their trips. We suggest a ratio of 1:10 kids per staff member (Israeli and American). We are on ground in Israel, creating a healthy and well working group dynamic throughout the program.
Communication is central to our programs. There are three offices: JCC Association in New York and Jerusalem, and our partner, Maccabi World Union. Our North American office is available 24/7 and maintains constant contact with our staff in Israel. We’ll help you and your staff every step of the way, talking to parents, working with community and training/supervising staff.
Customizing Your Trip
One of the things that makes JCC Maccabi Israel the ultimate Israel program and what sets us apart from the rest, is that we know that no two communities are alike which is why we will build your trip around your community’s needs. Everything from itinerary, dates and price can all be created specifically for your community.
What also sets us apart is our ability to partner community trips together. In the event that your community is unable to recruit a full bus (approximately 40 teens) we will do everything we can to combine your teens with those from another community. Combining community trips lowers costs, and allows teens from various communities to interact.
There are two major costs associated with running a teen tour Israel program: airfare and land costs. We will work with you on selecting the right flight and help your community meet its budgetary needs. Summer programs often qualify for local Jewish Federation matching funds programs. Many communities have Passport to Israel programs, or something similar, where the family, Jewish Federation and synagogue all contribute to a fund for teens to participate in an Israel experience. This too may helps defray the cost of the program.
Marketing Your Trip
JCC Maccabi Israel will provide marketing materials to help promote the program within your community. Some of the items we provide include:
- Program Brochure
- Program Flyer/Ad
- Sample Program Itinerary
- FAQ’s Sheet
- Safety and Security
- Web Support
- Online Registration Forms
- Registration Forms
- PowerPoint Presentations (upon request for orientation sessions)
Safety & Security
Our teens’ safety and security are our very highest priority. All JCC Maccabi Israel activities are in compliance with the strictest possible safety guidelines, in accordance with standards set forth by the Ministry of Education, the Jewish Agency Security Department, the Israeli Defense Forces, and SPNI (Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel). Click Here for more information about safety and security.
MIFGASH – Encounter with Israeli teens
Our mifgash with Israeli teens is an essential part of the JCC Maccabi Israel experience. Israeli and American teens learn more about each other’s culture’s and discover how much they have in common though they’re on the other side of the world. Hanging out and learning more about the lives of their new Israeli friends gives our participants a truer understanding of the Israeli lifestyle. The mifgash lasts from three to five days depending on what works for your community. As part of our Mifgash program, we offer the following:
- Partnership@Home programs in Israel
- Machatz program (Mifgash on a Kibbutz)
- Mifgash with Maccabi youth movement teens
What are you waiting for?
Contact the JCC Israel Center to get your trip started.