2018-09-12 / Mideast

Young Jews from Uganda visit Israel

A group of young Jews from Uganda completed a Birthright trip to Israel, even though Israel does not recognize them as Jewish. It is the first time that Ugandan Jews have participated in the free 10-day trip to Israel for Jews aged 18 to 32.

The trip was announced earlier this year. It was operated by Israel Experience with the help of Marom Olami, the young adult division of the world Conservative movement.

Some of the Ugandan Birthright participants had traveled to other countries before and others had never left their small villages before coming to Israel on Birthright. Many did not have a Ugandan passport when they learned of the trip.

The young Ugandans visited sites such as Yad Vashem in Jerusalem and participated in a ceremony inaugurating a new Torah scroll at the Western Wall’s egalitarian prayer area. The group also visited South Tel Aviv, where they learned about the plight of migrants from Africa living in Israel.

Participant Dafnah Sizomu called the trip “exciting for all of us as a community” because of the knowledge “that we are able to fulfill the dreams of our ancestors in this very moment.” (JTA)

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