For 20 Yachad Israel members, participating in this year’s Jerusalem Marathon on March 13 was the culmination of a dream. They all ran five or 10 kilometers.
Siblings Suri Goldstock, 24, and Mendy Goldstock, 21, are new olim living in Yerushalayim. They trained with their father for several months to be able to run in their first marathon. At the Pasta Party the night before the big event, they received the Sibling Athlete Award in recognition of their efforts.
Both Suri and Mendy Goldstock ran 5 kilometers. Mendy was accompanied by his peer, Benji Kurnick (right) a student from Los Angeles, California, who is learning at Yeshivat Lev HaTorah this year. The Goldstocks raised a significant amount of money to help expand Yachad Israel activities.
Elichi Glaser, 24, (in orange jersey) from Alon Shevut, in the Etzion Bloc south of Yerushalayim, is a veteran runner. This year he was accompanied by his peers, Dovid Simpser (to Glaser’s right) and Dovie Levinson who are both studying at Yeshivat Har Etzion in Alon Shevut for the second year.
Team Yachad Israel had about 290 runners this year. About one-third live in Israel and the remaining two-thirds are studying in Israel for the year. Together they raised more than $200,000.
“All the money they raised goes to Yachad Israel programs,” says Yoel Sterman, Director of Yachad Israel. “Team Yachad enables us to provide inclusive programs throughout the year,” he says. “This includes Shabbatonim, summer programs, and all kinds of special events,” says Co-Director Lisa Galinsky. “We cater to inviduals such as Suri, Mendy and Elchi and promote inclusion into the community at large,” she says.
Yachad Israel works with a group of peers or buddies, Sterman explains. “It was beautiful to see how enthusiastic everyone was both during the year and when it was time for the big day.”
“We take pride in being part of the beautiful Team Yachad family,” Galinsky says.