ZFA welcomes Gandel Foundation’s commitment to Jewish continuity

Birthright Israel

The ZFA is thrilled to announce a significant grant from Gandel Foundation for the Taglit-Birthright Israel program, which will go towards supporting three groups in the coming year.

Taglit-Birthright Israel is a visionary program that provides a free 10-day educational tour of Israel for young Jewish adults aged 18-26 who have never previously participated in a peer-group educational trip to Israel. The Zionist Federation of Australia (ZFA) is proud to represent the Australian Jewish community as the local partner in this unique project.

As Principal Australian Supporter, the contribution from Gandel Foundation will enable 120 young adults – many of whom are currently largely unaffiliated with the Australian Jewish community and have never visited Israel – to experience this life-changing program.

“My family strongly believes in supporting a range of programs that can foster and enhance Jewish continuity and identity, and help develop the future leaders in our community. The evidence shows that Taglit-Birthright Israel program has been a major contributor to strengthening Jewish continuity right around the world and we are very proud to be associated with it,” said Mr John Gandel AO, Chairman of Gandel Foundation.

“I hope that we can lead the way in the community and inspire many others to join us and support this innovative program. Together we can help shape and increase the sense of Jewish identity and connectedness for our younger generations right around Australia,” added Mr Gandel.

“Taglit-Birthright Israel is a critically important Israel program for us as a community as it has the direct ability to engage many young Jewish adults with the powerful connection to Israel, Judaism and other young Jews they meet during and after the program,” said ZFA President Philip Chester.

Reflecting on her Taglit-Birthright Israel experience earlier this year, program alum Jemma Podem said, “Taglit has proved to be an experience so rich in its content and something which has impacted on me so greatly. I have not only learned more about my heritage, Israel and its surrounding countries, but a lot about myself.”

Since its inception in 2000, more than 340,000 young Jews from 62 countries around the world took part in the Taglit-Birthright Israel program.

The ZFA works together with several local program organisers to operate Taglit-Birthright Israel. By the end of 2013, more than 3,600 Australians will have participated in this program. In 2013-14, the ZFA will be sending 320 young Jewish adults to Israel on Taglit-Birthright Israel experience.