Teens, Goodman, to reflect on Israel immersion travel experience

Chicago, Illinois—Eight Chicagoland area teenagers from JCC Camp Chi, who traveled to Israel this summer on the JCC Maccabi Israel immersion travel experience, will engage in a dinner and discussion with benefactor Larry Goodman of the Lillian and Larry Goodman Foundations on Wednesday, September 14, at 6.15 pm at the Mayer Kaplan JCC in Skokie.

Thanks to a generous grant from the Goodman Foundations, fifty-three 12th grade campers from JCC Camp Chi traveled to Israel as part of the Goodman Modern Israel History Program. The program serves as a way for JCC Camp Chi campers to learn about and form connections to the Jewish state.

During the trip, the teenagers traveled to Be’er Sheva, the capital of Israel's Negev region, via the Ben Gurion University Railway Station. They learned about Israeli university life and the Open Apartments Program (rent-free student housing in exchange for volunteering) from students at the Ben-Gurion University; participated in improv games led by acting students at the Lillian & Larry Goodman Theater and Acting School of the Negev; toured the Israeli Air Force Museum; and met with the mayor of Be'er Sheva, Ruvik Danilovich, at City Hall.

After dinner, from 7.30-8.30pm, additional teens from the trip will reunite to share memories, stories, and photos with Mr. Goodman.

The dinner and reunion are sure to feature lively discussions of the teen’s unique experiences traveling through Israel and informed and insightful, first-hand reflections on Israel life, culture, and the evident contributions by the Goodman Foundations to Israeli society. Please see sample quotes below.

Media are welcomed and encouraged to attend the event and speak with the teenagers and Mr. Goodman. To coordinate your attendance, or to schedule specific interview time, please contact Rachel Smith at 847.763.3661.

For further details about the JCC Maccabi Israel experience, the Goodman Modern Israel History Program, of the Lillian and Larry Goodman Foundations, please contact Rachel as above or visit www.llgoodmanfdn.org.

JCC Chicago is a nonprofit organization dedicated to ensuring a strong and vibrant Jewish life and community for generations to come. JCC is a partner in serving our community, supported by the Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation. www.gojcc.org

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Quotes from trip participants

"I love comparing and contrasting the train station with my own train station in Chicago."

Ross Hochwert, 17, Highland Park

"I think it’s really cool how Larry Goodman himself created a school that is so popular and influential."

Jamie Horwitz, 17, Buffalo Grove

"I think the role [Goodman’s] played as a philanthropist has not only benefited Israel but the lives of the [students]."

Nate Burstein, 17, St. Paul, MN

"It opens your eyes and ears and makes you appreciative of what's out there."

Alexa Winestock, 17, Wilmette