Yom Hazikaron 2016

May 19, 2016

The Manchester community welcomed a group of six Israeli teenagers as part of the 50-strong UJIA Magic Moments delegation to centres across the UK in May this year.

The delegates, aged 15-17, from the north of Israel spent one week living in our community and educating about Yom Hazikaron, Israel’s commemoration day for fallen soldiers. The young Israelis all come from Kfar Vradim, a small town on on the northern border with Lebanon.

For the first time the group was hosted by families from the Hale and Bowdon communities who gave them an extra-warm welcome especially on Shabbat. During the week the group ran Israel-related sessions at three primary schools as well as King David High School, and performed their Yom Hazikaron ceremony for the residents at Heathlands Village.  More than 500 attended the main community Yom Hazikaron ceremony which this year was outstanding.

Following the moving ceremony we were privileged to be joined by live video link by Rachel Frenkel, mother of Naftali, who was tragically kidnapped and murdered along with two of his friends in the summer of 2014.

Her message of hope and unity was inspirational and she received a standing ovation. For the first time the ceremony was repeated in South Manchester in front of an audience of more than 200 people. Overall the group reached a wide audience of all ages and clearly had an impact on everyone they met, with host families and others already planning their visits to the Galil to meet up with the delegates.

Hear her story here:

UJIA Magic Moments were also hosted by the Liverpool community this year. For the first time a delegation was chosen entirely from the pupils at the Anne Frank High School on Kibbutz Sasa, also on the Lebanese border. Liverpool King David High School is partnered with the Anne Frank School so this combination of two UJIA programmes (Magic Moments and School to School Partnership Programme) furthered the links between the schools and brought Israel alive for a religiously mixed school population.

During the week the delegates ran informal education sessions in King David Primary School and King David High School and got to know their peers both in school and over Shabbat, with activities kindly hosted by Rabbi and Rebbetzen Lieberman of Allerton Synagogue. The focus of the week was the movingly performed Yom Hazikaron ceremony which took place at the King David campus in front of more than 100 guests.  They also visited Stapely Jewish Care Home and participated in a fun community Yom Ha’atzmaut party organised by local Israelis.