Living in the Diaspora can present a challenge to maintaining a proud Jewish identity and bond to Israel, when those connections feel so far away. Natalie Grinshpun, 17, knows just how hard it can be. She goes to public school in Apple Valley, Minnesota, where there are few Jews for her to meet. But youth programs such as the ones the Orthodox Union’s NCSY offers have changed that for her.
“As soon as I come to Israel, I can feel the Jewish people around me, I can feel the support all the time,” according to Grinshpun. “It makes me feel like I belong somewhere, like I am home.”
And she is not alone; on Wednesday, NCSY’s 17 summer programs came together in Park Ra’anana to celebrate this unshakably strong bond between American Jewry and the State of Israel.
NCSY is dedicated to instilling in its participants a love for Israel and a connection to the Jewish state that become an integral part of their identities.
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