Lisa M. Pollack
Executive Director | Development | Photographer | Advocate

Jerusalem goes to Neve Hanna

Rabbi Liron Levy and the B'nai Mitzvah children at Neve Hanna Children's Home

In ancient times, when the Jewish temple existed, pilgrims from all over the world came to celebrate the holidays of Pesach, Sukkot and Shavuot in Jerusalem. This year, 2000 years after the second temple was destroyed, the Neve Hanna B’nai Mitzvah children wanted to take their trip to Jerusalem with Rabbi Liron Levy. This was always a great learning experience and lots of fun. In the past, the B’nai Mitzvah children walked the streets of Jerusalem connecting them to their history and heritage, but this year the Coronavirus stopped them from going on this outing. Imagination took over and Jerusalem was replicated at Neve Hanna Children’s Home.

Under the direction and creativity of Rabbi Liron Levy, a great project was set up for the B’nai Mitzvah children to lead their Neve Hanna community in celebration of Jerusalem. First, they imagined themselves as pilgrims going to Jerusalem. Teams were formed. Each had obstacles along the way, which could be solved by doing a mission involving Jerusalem:

  • Cryptographic (the art of writing or solving codes) Six different texts were presented. Each one explained one period of Jerusalem history. The children’s mission was to solve each cryptographic and place them in historical order.
  • Memory game – A double set of pictures set with names of important sites in the city were distributed.
  • Charades – Each group had to work together creating words for Jerusalem, 53 years and Israel to act out.
  • Football quiz – Answers to the quiz, which honored the mythological football group, “Beitar Yerushalaim,” were placed in a specified memory game box.

The Neve Hanna courtyard was used to create their own Jerusalem with a symbolic Western Wall where the children could place individual notes. Also created was the Teddy Kollek Stadium, the Knesset and the famous Mahane Yehuda Market, offering special Jerusalem dishes for the children to enjoy. The last mission in the courtyard was a sing-a-long dedicated to their wonderful capital city, Jerusalem, followed by a show with the B’nai Mitzvah group describing the special different figures of Jerusalem and then on to the finale – a Rap show performed by the children.

Rabbi Liron Levy stated, “It was a moving and enjoyable experience, making me proud seeing the B’nai Mitzvah children leading and tutoring all the groups.

Their devotion preparing and organizing the activities was mature and responsible. For the other children and staff it was a celebration of music, games, activities and good food which allowed them to close their eyes and for a brief moment feel like they are standing in the most beautiful city in the world – Jerusalem, our eternal united capital.

Go to to learn more about these special children, programs and projects at Neve Hanna.


About the Author
Lisa Pollack is Executive Director of American Friends of Neve Hanna, a non-profit children's organization associated with the Neve Hanna Children's Home in Kiryat Gat, Israel. Neve Hanna provides a warm and loving home for at-risk youth from disadvantaged families. With its individualized therapeutic programs and projects, Neve Hanna Children’s Home strives to meet all the physical, emotional, mental and educational needs of its children. Lisa is the former newsletter Copy Editor and Publicity Consultant for Congregation L'Dor V'Dor, Little Neck, New York. Lisa has community ties within the Jewish Community including Masorti, Aepi, StandWithUs, MERCAZ-USA, Women's League for Conservative Judaism, and the Federation of Jewish Men's Clubs. She is also a Public Speaker, Israel Advocate, Activist, Photographer and Writer.
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