Gateway and Tents, A partnership of Shaaray Tefila, NYC and Ohel Avraham-Leo Baeck Education Center, Haifa
This partnership is funded by a generous grant by the UJA- Federation of New York Global Jewish Connections Initiative with other funds provided by Shaaray Tefila’s Sesquicentennial Fund and the Ohel Avraham- Leo Baeck Education Center.
Our joint vision for this partnership is two congregations (Shaaray Tefila and Ohel Avraham) and two schools (Shaaray Tefila’s Religious School and Leo Baeck Education Center) whose members, students, and families are deeply and strongly connected to each other on a personal level and thereby develop stronger Jewish identities and live richer Jewish lives. Programming will include worship services, education, tikkun olam activities, and social interactions, and we will engage congregants of all ages. Our name for the partnership – “Gateways and Tents” – draws from the names of the two congregations: Shaaray Tefila (Gates of Prayer) and Ohel Avraham (Tent of Abraham).
Teen Youth Exchange
The highlight of this partnership is our Teen Exchange. Each year our teens and teens from Ohel Avraham - Leo Baeck Education Center interact through Skype, emails and conference calls, sharing eachother's cultures and learning from their very different experiences. This hard work and study culminates with face-to-face meetings when the American students travel to Haifa where they live with their teen counterparts and their families, attend classes and services and participate in other social excercises. In the spring the experience is reversed as the Americans become hosts for their friends from Haifa. Israeli students explore New York City, participate in teen and adult programs at Shaaray Tefila, work in our Soup Kitchen and Sandwich Saturday and are special guests for Kabbalat Shabbat.
From left: Hillel and Elana Dorfman, Ohel Avraham members; Rivi Mor, Ohel Avraham staff; Avigael Brill, Grade 3 teacher at Leo Baeck Education Center; Rabbi Gabby Dagan, Ohel Avraham; Shlomo Weinberg, HS educator at Leo Baeck; and Michal Peled, Ohel Avraham member