120 North American students are currently in Israel to participate in the Diller Teen Fellows program. The program, which includes educational workshops, weekend retreats and the creation and implementation of social service projects, pairs cohorts of incoming high school juniors from North American communities with cohorts of Israeli students their same age.
“These young teens are our future,” said Helen Diller of the Helen Diller Family Foundation. “We need to invest in them, show them they can lead us, and empower them to help repair the world. It fills me with pride to know that these teens will unite under the banner of Jewish peoplehood, learning to guide the next generation in meaningful pursuits during this inspiring trip to Israel.”
This year, six Diller Teen Fellows partnerships are participating in the Israel Summer Seminar:
- San Francisco/Upper Galilee
- Los Angeles/Tel Aviv
- MetroWest New Jersey/Rishon LeZion
- Montreal/Beer Sheva-Bnei Shimon
During their three-week seminar in Israel, the participants will come together for the Diller Teen Fellows International Congress from July 27th-31st. This seminar, which focuses on the concept of a global Jewish Peoplehood, is largely facilitated by program graduates participating in follow-up programming which provides them with platforms to put their leadership training into action. The rest of the time, the fellows will engage with the “real” Israel, focusing on both its beauty and blemishes, in Israeli cultural and exchange activities, as well as gather to celebrate Shabbat and other Jewish religious ceremonies, visit historical sites, hike and experience outdoor activities, volunteer through community service activities chosen and created by the teens themselves, and be hosted by their partner communities.
The Diller Teen Fellows program was established in 1997 by San Francisco philanthropist Helen Diller. More information is available on the program website.