Category Archives: Alternative Spring Break '10

This spring break our students will venture to 7 different international and national locations.

Follow their travels as they learn about issues that plague our country and world. Students will travel in teams to cities all over the world, engage in active service, interact with Jewish communities and learn about social issues and how they can make a difference.

Follow our students on their adventures to:
Guatemala to build a classroom in a remote village
Mexico to work in a border town
Brazil to build a school in a FaVella
Arizona to work with USA Veterans
Miami to work on urban issues
New Orleans to re-build from Katrina
Orlando to offer flood relief

becoming a kid again

When do we grow up? That is similar to asking when our day begins; does it start when we arrive at our destination, during our journey, when we wake up, or possibly long before we ever knew it would come? Growing up is a state of mind – one that we embody based on societal pressures, our relationships with other people, or the circumstances that we are handed in this everlasting journey. We feel compelled to move onto this next level of our life, one defined by “grown up” activities, but we never stop and actually smell the coffee that everyone is drinking. But when the cards are not in our favor – and eventually when it is time to meet our maker – we decide that it is appropriate to celebrate and enjoy what we are given on a daily basis. But why wait? There is no time like the present, and it is indeed a gift. Adulthood is not an inevitable part of our lives, it is a mere construction that we have stuck with for way too long. Being a kid is our most natural form, one filled with affluence, beauty, excitement, and pure joy, and we must let these virtues enter our lives. Be conscious of happiness and you will flow along with the world, like a rock in a stream.

This week is focused on an environment of absolute bliss – to pay attention to the celebrations of life rather than its tribulations, and suddenly the tribulations do not seem so horrible after all. And in order to do that, we must become kids again, growing backwards to reclaim the wonderful world we all share.

smiling now and excited for tomorrow,

the kids of forest view lane

Off to India!

Hi Everyone!
Here are some pictures of the 20 students heading off to Mumbai, India with Maryland Hillel and the Joint Distribution Committee for a cultural exchange with the isolated Jewish community of Mumbai!

After Check-in at the Air India counter in Newark, the group will be on one VERY long direct 16 hour flight to Mumbai!

Once they arrive, they will hit the ground running learning about the Jewish community and history in Mumbai.

Check back soon for more updates!

Miami – the finale

Wrapping up our volunteer time in Miami, we shared part of the day on Friday with seniors in the JCC of Miami Beach.  We started off the day with stretches and exercises and smoothly segued into some ‘ro

More Dog Meets World pictures!

See pictures from the spring trip to Brazil and the winter trip to the Dominican Republic! To learn more about DMW, visit www.dogmeetsworld.org

Mexico: Dog Meets World Photos

Dog Meets World (DMW) is a non-profit organization that aims to put photos in the hands of kids and families in need, often for the first time. Travelers take along “Foto” the unifying pup prop and  a portable printer, so they can give out tangible joy as a photo diplomat. This year Maryland Hillel partnered with DMW on alternative break trips. To see the Mexico group’s DMW photos, click here! To learn more about DMW, please visit www.dogmeetsworld.org.

Shabbat in New Orleans

It’s Saturday night and we just finished with Havdallah, the ending of Shabbat and the beginning of the new week.  Shabbat was great — we all went to various services or a conversation on Shabbat, we had a nice dinner, and we spent time together relaxing.  Today, some people got up early for services, and in the afternoon there were various naps, games, and discussions going on that made this Shabbat an awesome ending to an incredible week.  After lunch, we got together as a campus to give out paper plate awards and perform the parody songs we’d written at our work sites.  The lyrics are below:

Team One (Captain: Val Kravetz)

*To the tune of “Tik Tok” by Ke$ha*

Wake up in the morning and I’m feeling shitty

Grab my boots, I’m out the door, I’m gonna hit this city

Before I leave, brush my teeth, grab a bottle of water

‘Cause when I get to the site you know it’s gonna get hotter

I’m talking work boots on my toes, paint all over my clothes, no picking up my cellphone

Eating all our PBs, going out to New Orleans, trying to get a little bit tipsy…

Don’t stop, build it up, let us blow the speakers out tonight, I’ma build til we can’t see sunlight

Tik tok on the clock but the building don’t stop no (oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh)

Ain’t got a care in the world but got plenty of primer

Ain’t got no food in my stomach but I’m such a good rhymer

Now the tasks are lining up cause they hear we got skill

But they quickly find out that we just wanna chill

Everybody getting crunk, crunk

Trying to fix this junk, junk

Eating our Clif bars, chunk, chunk

We won’t go until they kick us out, or the captains move us round, captains move us round, round…

Don’t stop, build it up, let us blow the speakers out tonight, I’ma build til we can’t see sunlight

Tik tok on the clock but the building don’t stop no (oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh)

*Switch to tune of Down by Jay Sean ft. Lil Wayne

New Orleans, are you down down down down down? Down… Down…

Even if Katrina’s raining down, down, down…

You oughta know, today is the the day we’re gonna finish this row

Put on a show, I wanna see how it looks without holes

Don’t leave it behind, cause we have tonight to get away

So come and climb high with me as we paint the roof all day

New Orleans, don’t worry, you are my only, you won’t be lonely, even if Katrina’s raining down

You’ll be my only, no need to worry, New Orleans are you down down down down down, down… down…

Even if Katrina’s raining down, down… down…

Just let it be, come on and bring the glaze right next to me

Take it away, let’s turn this place into our private getaway

Don’t leave it behind, cause we have tonight to get away

So come and climb high with me as we paint the roof all day

New Orleans, don’t worry, you are my only, you won’t be lonely, even if Katrina’s raining down

You’ll be my only, no need to worry, New Orleans are you down down down down down, down… down…

Even if Katrina’s raining down, down… down…

Down like she supposed to be, NOLA’s  down below the sea

Down like the temperature, usually it’s 70

She go sky lab please, I got that drink from Bourbon Street

Now it’s Saint Patrick’s Day, and people parading in the streets

I’ma build this city from the ground up

Got me looking like a painter, dripping primer from above

Don’t you ever wish you lived in this city? It’s so pretty

And honestly, it’ll rebound like the economy

New Orleans, don’t worry, you are my only, you won’t be lonely, even if Katrina’s raining down

You’ll be my only, no need to worry, New Orleans are you down down down down down, down… down…

Even if Katrina’s raining down, down… down…

Team Two (Captain: Eric Feldman)

*To the tune of “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor*

Paint. Paint. Paint. Paint. Paint. Paint. Paint. Paint. Paint. Paint.

Paint. Paint. Paint. Paint. Paint. Paint. Paint. Paint. Paint. Paint.

*Time bomb song*

Time bomb ticking. Its a time bomb ticking. Its a time bomb ticking.
Tic tic tic BOOM.

*To the tune of the Maryland Fight Song*

Ms. Betty were building your house
Raise high ladders and be bold

Cuz there’s nothing like tikkun olam
Especially when your having fun

We’ve got the paintprushes
And the stapple gun

Keep on priming don’t give in
N-E-W-O-R-L-E-A-N-S Rebuild!

bum, dbumbd, bum, dmubm bum Bond-o
Bum, dbmund, bum, dbum, bum. Caulk gun
Bum, dbumb, bum. Dbum, bum. CarlSteve
Bum,dbumb, bum, dbum, bun. Who-dat

Team 1 is the 2.0 version of team 2. D-BOMB

*To the tune of Ole*

Oleg, oleg, oleg, oleg…
(Mosh pit)

Tucson and Mexico Trip Come Together!

For SHabbat, Mexico and Tuson met up in Pheoniz, AZ.  Before heading to family’s homes for SHabbat, the group enjoyed a baseball training game and some much deserved down time together!