Like every year, each of the mechinot (pre-military leadership academies) got ready for Passover according to its own unique tradition.
Students found the time to give their mechinot a thorough but festive cleaning, prepare a celebratory meal, read the Haggadah in the spirit of their mechinot, go hiking in honor of the holiday, and volunteer in local communities.
As we enter the last two months of the mechina year, we wish all our students and staff success in their continued journey to freedom as they stretch the borders of their knowledge and personal abilities, acquire new tools, and enjoy this special period in their lives.
At Mechinat Avner–Akko, students found a novel way to go about cleaning for Pesach:
Mechinat Melach HaAretz
The students of Mechinat Melach HaAretz celebrated the Seder early at the foot of Masada:
Mechinat HaEmek marked the holiday with activities benefiting the local community as well as joint activities with its neighbors:
Before heading out for their Pesach break, the students at the IMPJ Mechina in Jaffa did some serious cleaning. The effort began as an internal one, with a look at the meaning of a group and especially their group and the amazing process it was undergoing, and continued externally as the students spruced up all the mechina’s facilities and turned them into a far more welcoming place:
Meitzar Academy for Leadership and Social Responsibility
The students of the Meitzar Academy for Leadership and Social Responsibility, like the Israelites of yore, headed out to the unknown for a hike through selected urban and desert landscapes. “The ‘Exodus’ of the Class of 2018,” said one participant, “wrapped up with some sun, some wind, some climbing, some weight to carry on our backs, but above all, a real sense of camaraderie among friends”:
The Galon Group, one of the groups of the current class at Mechinat Nachshon, operated a daycare in Kiryat Gat during the week before the holiday, when schools are not in session:
The mechina students of BINA, meanwhile, turned one of their regularly scheduled treks into an extraordinary experience:
When Amit, one of the students, discovered that the final trek of the mechina year would conflict with a memorial service for her friend Or Elbaz, who was killed in a traffic accident, she decided that she would eat her cake and have it too.
“When I realized the timing of the trek conflicted with the memorial service for my friend Or, who was killed in a traffic accident two years ago, I had an idea: why not combine the two—memorialize and remember Or with my feet, by telling the other members of my class who she was, as a way of keeping her present in our world?”
Amit spent time consulting and talking with friends and with the head of the mechina, and it was decided that the focus would be on a few values that best represented Or: friendship, taking action and initiative for the sake of the other and the community, road safety, and defensive driving.
“For me, this trek was a lot more than just the last one of the spring term. It was a trek with a different atmosphere, one where I was able to look around every minute and feel Or at my side. A trek of appreciating the little things in life, a trek of helping
others—because you just don’t leave someone who’s tired behind. A trek of listening, to myself and my surroundings. A trek of opening my eyes—a trek of or (light).”