Sometimes we all need help
Take a deep breath and enjoy the moment. That’s what it is to appreciate life and to be satisfied.Full Story
I entered a new world, Hillel helped me understand it
I am Michael Eisenstein, 29 years old and living in Herzliya. I grew up in a modern ultra-orthodox community in Bnei Brak, about ten years ago following a nagging, inner desire for self-fulfilment and freedom, I enlisted in the IDF and disaffiliated myself from ultra orthodoxy.Full Story
The longing is more painful than the fear
I am Sari Shapira 26 years old from Tel Aviv. I used to live in Jerusalem in the ultra-orthodox Lithuanian community. At the age of 21, the discussions around matchmaking became more earnest, and I realized that I was not interested in getting married at such a young ageFull Story
It is possible to get through the challenges and to succeed
I am Tomo Chen, a volunteer at Hillel; I work as a copywriter and live in Tel Aviv. I volunteered at Hillel's transition apartments in the Tel Aviv branch, and I am the address for everyone who makes "double exit", i.e. both disaffiliated from extreme orthodoxy and declaring their sexuality (LGBT).Full Story
Israel, like the US, is a country divided; and the COVID crisis has only emphasized the deep issues we face in politics, healthcare, education, employment. A renewed commitment to fundamental progressive values is absolutely essential moving forward.
No community represents the potential of such commitment more than the Yotzim – an emerging movement of young adults who have left ultra-Orthodoxy to join larger Israeli society.
The world that they exited chooses not to participate in the financial and ideological life of the country, and is perhaps the largest socio-economic issue facing Israel in the near future. In contrast, Yotzim choose to enter that life fully. They do so knowing too well the price.
Excommunicated by family and friends, they face social isolation and struggle with gaps in education, employment, and housing security. Yet it is their determination to succeed rather than these obstacles that defines them.
Yotzim aged 18-30 are one of the fastest growing demographics in Israel – their numbers will literally double in the next 10 years. Once they struggled on the margins to survive. Today, with the help of Hillel – The Right to Choose, they enter the mainstream and thrive.