Federation’s Reverse Mifgash – Bringing Israelis to DC

The incoming Reverse Mifgash delegation at an information session in Israel.

Eat better.  Go to the gym.  Call Saba and Savta more.  Donate to charity.

These are typical pledges made for New Year’s resolutions.  But what do people say when they make Jewish New Year resolutions?

It is that time of the year.  Pools are closing.  Leaves are starting to turn.  Sixth & I, Washington Hebrew, Adas Israel, and other shuls are filling up for the high holidays.  But it is also an atypical year.  The Nats have the best record in baseball.  RGIII has given a new hope to Redskins fans.  And Young Leadership of The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington is bringing Taglit-Birthright Israel to DC.  If your pledge for 5773 was is to get more involved in the Jewish community, reconnect with Israel, meet new friends, go out and have fun, fight anti-Semitism, or learn something new…then this program is for you.

The community is opening its arms and welcoming 12 Israelis for the Reverse Mifgash, which kicks off October 9 and will run for ten days.  As you could assume by the name of the event, the program complements Birthright Israel by bringing Israelis who have been on a Taglit-Birthright Israel: DC Community Trip* to the U.S. to reconnect with their busmates and meet hundreds more of DC, MD, and VA’s most fun and attractive Jewish young leaders.

And just as the community is opening its arms, twenty-four young professionals from the Greater Washington region are opening up their homes so our Israeli guests have a more authentic experience during their stay than at a hotel.  Hundreds more opened up their wallets to sponsor the program and collectively they raised over $26,000 through “friend-raising” (grassroots fundraising through personal networks).  And your calendar just got filled-up with tons of exciting educational, cultural, and social programs during these ten days — such as a Birthright Bar Mitzvah Bash that celebrates the program’s 13th year with a 90s themed party at the DCJCC featuring one of the DMV’s best cover bands.

“This is my fourth Reverse Mifgash,” said David Manchester, who serves as one of the program co-chairs.  “The host committee and I are extremely proud to make this program the biggest one in DC’s history and we hope to see you and your friends there next month,” he added.

The program is sponsored by The Jewish Federation and NEXT DC (the DC-area Birthright alumni network).  It brings American and Israeli Taglit-Birthright alumni together for a ten-day immersive experience in the Greater Washington area.  Programming, in addition to the DCJCC, will be held at The Kennedy Center, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, JCC of Greater Washington, and other locations.

Acting Gather The Jews Girl of the Year Ariana Heideman is excited.  “I love Israel, Israelis, and bridging that community with American Jewry,” says Ariana.  “This really is a unique opportunity to reconnect with their Israeli peers and show them with the same hospitality as when they were on Taglit,” continues Heideman.

To learn more about the Reverse Mifgash or to register for events visit:  www.ShalomDC.org/ReverseMifgash or contact sara.weiner@shalomdc.org.

*NOTE – Registration for the winter 2012-2013 Taglit-Birthright Israel: DC Community Trip is currently open.  Click here to learn more.