Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Heroes for Life visits GPM

It is a right of passage for young Israelis to take a long international trip after completing their IDF service. Often times, they find themselves backpacking through third world countries such as South America, India or Nepal. These young adults want to give back to the communities they visit, so they join Heroes for Life in order to make their post army experiences even more meaningful.

“Heroes for life” was created by Captain Gilli Cohen who had been listening to many of his soldiers discussing their plans for travel after the army. The soldiers expressed interest in doing something meaningful for a week or two while backpacking overseas – and he decided to take action. He met with people, formed a committee, and opened a Facebook group which quickly garnered over 4,000 members. Finally Gilli contacted GPM for assistance, as well as the Israeli Consulate in Mumbai, and all together they formulated a plan and launched their project. 

Geography lessons

Every year in August the former soldiers come to India for a service-oriented experience in a community center in central Mumbai. 

They also teach the children in the Kalwa slums in classes run by GPM. 

Everyday for two weeks, a group of around 15 volunteers come to the Joshua Greenberger Learning Center and teach the GPM children. The 2017 cohort taught the children lessons on science, geography, manners, and nutrition. The children could not get enough of these "heroes," and came to school excited everyday. 

Jacob Sztokman, founder of GPM is always excited when Heroes for Life comes to volunteer "We are very happy when the Heroes for Life come and share their knowledge and experiences with this children.  This is their third year with us. This specific service partnership is extremely important to us." 

Heroes For Life group picture with GPM staff 
GPM looks forward to more Heroes for Life groups to come work with us in the future.
Stay tuned for two upcoming blogs in Hebrew from Heroes for Life participants who taught in GPM classes!

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