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Update #2

Posted on 07/06/2011 @ 06:09 PM

Dear Friends & Family,

After a long and exhausting plane ride, the Impact Israel crew safely landed in the Holy Land. On Wednesday, our first full day with minimal jet lag, we explored the many attractions that the Old City of Jerusalem has to offer. We started our day with a trip to the Tower of David museum, where we learned about the history of Jerusalem, and the many nations that have conquered it throughout the years. Although we focused on the Jewish people's role throughout time in a secular manner, interestingly enough, the museum caters to other populations as well in order to educate as broad an audience as possible. The museum not only gave the group an education about the city that we had previously not known, but allowed us to see a 360 degree view of both the Old and New City. We also had an opportunity to meet with Itai Ravid, Assistant to the President of the Supreme Court Israel. We were allowed to sit in the largest of the court rooms in the new Supreme Court building and discussed the differences in the legal systems in Israel, America and Canada. A workshop on the importance of community service and a surprise shipping trip ended our first Impact Day.

Friday, the director of Ir Amim, an organization dealing with Israeli/Palestinian issues in Jerusalem, spoke with us at the hotel. We discussed the problems with the current borders of Jerusalem, the history of the borders, as well as solutions for the future borders. Following that, we went to a promenade with a view of not only Jerusalem, but the security gate and Jordan valley as well. This allowed us to apply the knowledge we gained earlier in the morning. We further investigated political conflicts through modern and abstract art and sculpture at the Museum of the Seam. Lunch was eaten in the busy Jerusalem market, after which we met a young university student who talked to us about the employees' rights and the wrong doings of some employers in Israel. This taught us that even the smallest adjustments within a community may lead to a larger reaction. At the end of the long day, some of us chose to return to the hotel to prepare for Shabbat, while others went on to visit "the Kotel" or Western Wall for a final end of day prayer. Thus far, the trip has already made a positive impression on every participant!

Emily Hollander and Emily Schreck

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