Addressing Needs in Israel
The Shalom Hartman Institute mobilized students and educators, faculty and scholars, staff and rabbis to respond to the ongoing war in Israel and support those affected by the war:
- Rabbanut Yisraelit, our Israeli network of pluralistic rabbis, is providing direct spiritual, pastoral, and psychosocial support to hundreds of evacuees from Southern and Northern Israel, wounded soldiers, and families of hostages. Watch 3 short videos about their work.
- We are supporting students, young adults, and educators with ideas, resources and programming to navigate these difficult and unsettling times.
- To mark the traditional 30 day shloshim mourning period after the October 7 massacre, the Shalom Hartman Institute produced a short tekkes (ceremony), with a special version specifically for the Hartman High Schools in Jerusalem. The ceremony was translated into English for use in the North American Jewish community.
We have opened up our Jerusalem campus to community groups and organizations as well as families of those displaced and who have loved ones serving in the IDF.
- Created a volunteer-led distribution center to provide creature comforts and prepare meals for IDF soldiers.
- Provided childcare and other services for families that have been evacuated and supporting families with one or more parents who have been deployed with childcare, food assistance, and community.
- In November, the Hartman High School for Boys celebrated the Ethiopian holiday of Sigd with 300 immigrants who were evacuated from Ashkelon and Netivot. Coming together brought both communities comfort from the depth of Ethiopian culture and showed us how to gather in times of communal pain and suffering.
- For Hanukkah, the first Jewish holiday since the shattering events of Simchat Torah:
- Hartman’s Center for Ritual and Ceremonies in Jerusalem developed new intentions for each of the 8 nights, which were distributed to soldiers, evacuees, teachers, and families. An English version was also developed and distributed across North America.
- We hosted a Hannukah Conference for educators that offered joint learning on the human spirit in times of war and included a candle lighting by a member of Kibbutz Be’eri and a performance by musician Shai Tzabari.
- Participants in the Hevruta Gap-Year Program organized a Hannukah Fun Day for families of evacuees and serving soldiers that included art, sports, and learning activities for children, teens, and parents.
- On the last night of Hanukkah, the Institute hosted an evening of thanks for volunteer organizations including a candle lighting ceremony and free concert with Israeli musician Eviyatar Bannai.