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October 22, 2014 / 28 Tishri, 5775
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Posts Tagged ‘MASA’

Sharansky Says Yoni Netanyahu Was an Inspiration while in Jail

Sunday, April 14th, 2013

Yoni Netanyahu, the brother of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu who was killed in the Entebbe rescue, was an inspiration to Natan Sharansky while imprisoned in a Soviet jail, the former Refusenik said Sunday.

Speaking to 5,000 Masa Israel Journey participants at a Remembrance Day for Fallen Soldiers ceremony, Sharansky said, “While in the Soviet prison, … I thought about the three Israeli sportsmen who had visited Russia and had bravely met with us. They told us that Israel was a place of great joy.

“I later heard that one of the three was killed in the Yom Kippur war. But, mostly I thought about Yoni Netanyahu. The fact that the State of Israel was prepared to send its soldiers to rescue Jews all over the world gave me great strength. Yoni was 29 when he was killed and was 29 when I was arrested. Every time that I felt that I didn’t have the strength to keep resisting the authorities, I thought about Yoni Netanyahu and it gave me the strength to keep going.”

Brazilian Female Judo Champ Makes Aliyah

Wednesday, March 6th, 2013

Brazilian judo champ Camila Minakawa, who won a bronze medal in the under-21 Judo World Championships, made aliyah from Brazil to Israel Wednesday morning.

Minakawa will join the Israeli women’s Judo team, whose coach Shany Hershko and the Jewish Agency helped her make aliyah.

Minakawa, 21, has a Jewish mother who works as a Judo coach and a Japanese-Brazilian father who is an Olympic Judo referee. During her childhood, Minkawa was active in the Zionist Youth movement HaBonim Dror and has been practicing Judo since a young age. She has visited Israel a number of times and in 2009 participated in the 18th Macabee Games, where she won a gold medal in the women’s Judo event.

Hershko, the coach of the Israeli women’s Judoka team stayed in touch with Camila and mentioned aliyah when they met several months ago at an international training camp.

“Camila was very impressed by the high level of the training that the Israeli team undertakes and from the professional environment here,” according to Hershko. “Together with her mother, she decided that her place is here in Israel and she expressed a desire to represent the State of Israel in competition.

“I am certain that a sportswoman who won a bronze medal in the Under 21 World Championship will add an additional dimension and power to our talented Israel Judo team when she joins us.”

The Jewish community in Brazil numbers around 80,000, most of whom live in the capital São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.

Brazilian Jews maintain a strong connection with Israel, with an average of 200 making aliyah every year, and many hundreds more participating on educational programs such as Birthright or the Jewish Agency’s MASA program.

Jewish Agency chairman Natan Sharansky said, “Camila joins a family of outstanding Jewish sportsmen and women who choose to make aliyah each year, and who participate in a wide range of sports bringing great honor to Israel in international competitions.”

Sharansky Opens Agency in Munich, Fears Assimilation

Tuesday, March 5th, 2013

Jewish Agency chairman Natan Sharansky opened a new Jewish campus in Munich this week and declared, “The Jewish community in Germany is indeed unique” but faces the challenge of assimilation.

The campus will house the Jewish Agency’s Munich office and the European Janusz Korczak Academy, a Jewish Agency-supported school that integrates traditional Jewish learning with a humanistic philosophy.

The Jewish community in Germany has flourished in the last two decades following a wave of immigration from the former Soviet Union and has grown to more than 200,000.

“In the last two decades the community has increased in size exponentially but assimilation could cause it to disappear just as quickly,” Sharansky said. “The Jewish Agency for Israel is therefore making a special effort to help young Jews in Germany strengthen their Jewish identity and their connection to Israel.”

These efforts include trips to Israel through Taglit-BirthrightIsrael and Masa Israel Journey.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/sharansky-opens-agency-in-munich-fears-assimilation/2013/03/05/

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