Bible Quiz a nail-biting adventure
This year, I got into the final round for the top 16 contestants in the International Bible Quiz, broadcast live on Yom Ha’atzmaut on 15 April.
The Bible is the greatest compendium of tales ever compiled, with murder, infidelity, bloodshed, sibling rivalry, deceit, love, war – every plot twist imaginable.
The South African finalists included Liron Krawitz from King David Victory Park, Temima Goldfein from Hirsch Lyons, and myself, representing King David Linksfield.
The highest achievers usually embark on a two-week Tanach camp in Israel. My brother, who represented South Africa in the quiz in 2019, described the camp as the best two weeks of his life. But the intrusion of COVID-19 meant that the camp translated into a five-hour online tour on Zoom. I felt invigorated seeing the battlefield where young David vanquished the giant, Goliath, but honestly, it didn’t replace the in-person camp we’d been looking forward to for so long.
It was exciting to be broadcast on Israeli television. While sitting there, I received pictures of my friends watching me from a projector in the school hall. My heart swelled as I realised how many people across the world were supporting me. I felt honoured to represent my school and my country.
On the eve of the finals, I received a heart-warming message from Rabbi Gary Braude, who said, “I hope that the more you learn, the more you will see that the Tanach is an unfinished book, a story of the Jewish people that continually unfolds with all the modern miracles and challenges as occurred in biblical times. I hope you will see yourself as having a chapter to write in that narrative.”
It wasn’t what I dreamed about when I watched my brother in Israel two years ago, but it was a special and a pivotal moment in my life.
KDVP workshops give teens tools for life
King David Victory Park Grade 8, 9, and 10 students recently participated in Trulife workshops on sexting and cyber-bullying, vaping, and addiction. Using music, dance, and slick performance, facilitators took students on a powerful and interactive journey through the dangers of being a teenager today, while imparting information on how to be more “street-wise” online and the dangers of vaping and substance abuse.
Global teen-led organisation, BBYO, launches in SA
South Africa’s newest Jewish youth organisation, BBYO, led by teens for teens, was launched at King David Schools this past week.
A proud affiliate of the South African Zionist Federation (SAZF), BBYO spans more than 60 countries with 70 000 members worldwide. It had its roots in the United States in 1924, when Jewish teens, who were excluded from joining fraternities and sororities, started their own organisation centred on a strong Jewish identity, Zionism, leadership, and inclusivity. After nearly 100 years, BBYO has established itself as the leading Jewish organisation for connecting the next generation of Jewish teen leaders from around the world.
BBYO isn’t a youth movement. It exists in addition to teens’ current youth movement experience. High school students from Grades 8 to 11 are empowered through a year-round programme that is led by teens for their peers. They are supported by a dedicated team of professional staff in South Africa and globally who are deeply invested in their success.
Teen leaders connect through online meetups, digital programmes, and in-person travel experiences. BBYO offers many travel opportunities to visit Jewish communities in Argentina, Europe, and Israel, with the highlight of the year being BBYO’s US International Convention every February, which hosts more than 5 000 top teen leaders, educators, professionals, and philanthropists from around the world. Delegates hear from inspiring speakers, deepen leadership skills, celebrate Shabbat, have access to exclusive music performances, and build friendships from around the world. Local and international events are pluralistic, which means every Jew, regardless of observance level, will find a safe place to practice their Judaism.
Find out more at https://azabbg.bbyo.org/
King David High Schools had an ad-Venture weekend
Shabbatonim may have been prevented by the pandemic, but King David School’s Venture educational programme for Grades 10 and 11 managed to replicate the Encounter experience in an action-packed few days recently.
Students heard Rabbi Benji Levy, an inspirational educator who came from Israel for the event. They also learned from some of the best rabbis, rebbetzins, and educators the community has to offer. They also enjoyed an escape room and illusionist show.
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