By Sarah Packman and Michelle Wales
For the past eight days, we have experienced the sisterhood of souls and hearts of Jewish mothers from around the country and across the world. Today we had the honor of touring and experiencing Milwaukee’s Partnership2Gether (P2G) sister region, the Sovev Kinneret (around the Sea of Galiee).
We began our day at Poriya Hospital and met P2G Sovev Kinneret chair and ER physician, Dr. Bat Sheva Tsadok. We learned about the mission of the hospital to serve the diverse residents of this northern region and increase local access to specialized care. The staff and patients reflect the diverse Jewish, Muslim, Christian, Druze, and Circassian population. We also heard about Project Good Neighbor, which partners with the IDF to secretly bring Syrian refugees of war to the hospital where they receive all the care and treatment they need before returning to Syria.
Next, we visited Branco Weiss School and witnessed our Milwaukee Jewish Federation dollars at work as we shared the hot lunch that MJF sponsors twice per week for all the students. We heard about the school and its mission of personal learning, dialogue, high standards, and optimism. Chatting with students and answering their questions about our impressions of Israel was a highlight.
We toured Kinneret Courtyard, and learned of its historic significance in training early pioneers in agriculture, including being the first agricultural school for women.
We enjoyed a delicious stop at Tamar Bakfar (Dates in the Village) to taste, shop, and learn about local products. The culinary theme continued with a chocolate workshop at Galita, in Kibbutz Degania B, where we made our own chocolate creations to take home (if they last that long!)
After a wonderful dinner at Kibbutz Degania A with P2G committee members and volunteers, we begin our journey home to Milwaukee with full stomachs and even fuller hearts. We have learned so much about the unity of the Jewish people and the strength, power and sisterhood of Jewish women around the world. We all look forward to bringing this newfound knowledge and energy to our families and our communities!