With 10,600 participants in its 300+ programs in 2021, Masa continued to welcome young Jews from around the world to Israel for life-changing experiences, even when other programs had to cancel or shift to virtual plans when borders closed. While Masa Israel Teaching Fellows, who teach English to Israeli students from disadvantaged backgrounds, did have to adapt to online activities, in February 2021, they were able to get their first COVID-19 vaccine doses in Israel. This early special allowance was made for these Fellows, even though they didn’t have Israeli citizenship, so they could return to the classroom as soon as possible after teaching on Zoom.
“To me, teaching English in Israel sounded exciting. In the beginning, we taught online but were still able to develop great connections with the students. When we finally met in person, I felt I already knew them well,” said Emmanuel, 26, a Masa Israel Teaching Fellow from Birmingham, UK.
In 2021, Masa Israel Teaching Fellows celebrated its 10th anniversary. Since its founding, 1,900 Fellows have taught English to 20,000 students in 100+ schools across Israel.
“I have learned so much about myself and truly grown since I’ve been here,” shared Morgan, 22, from Nashville, Tennessee, who is serving as a Teaching Fellow in Netanya. “I have seen the impact I have on my students, and the pure joy I get when a student gets a word or letter right is something I wouldn’t trade for the world.”
Masa has a wide variety of programs for young Jews from around the world to choose from, allowing for participants to come to Israel and experience it like a local while pursuing their interests both professionally and personally. Two such programs are Masa Career, which allows participants to enhance their resumes by developing their professional skills at leading companies in Israel, and Masa Volunteering, which gives participants the opportunity to make an impact while immersing themselves in Israeli society.
In 2021, Masa’s career programs saw a 153% increase in demand, and demand for its volunteer programs increased 50% in the previous two years.
Through Masa Career, Ben from Vancouver, Canada, interned at an Israeli biotech company, utilizing his background in materials engineering to work with one of the most impactful Israeli companies in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
“In these crazy times we are living in, I am so grateful I have been able to come to Israel for a life-changing experience with the help of Masa,” said Ben. “It’s been a great opportunity for me to build on my engineering skills and learn the start-up culture while working on products that help save lives.”
Meanwhile, Micaela, 23, from Buenos Aires, Argentina, is enjoying volunteering with different diverse populations that make up Israeli society through a Masa Volunteering-affiliated program.
“I chose to participate in Masa Volunteering because I wanted to get to know Israel itself in an in-depth and unique way,” stated Micaela. “Participants have a meaningful and life-changing experience while also promoting the well-being and progress of the country.”
For 28,601 immigrants from around the world, we made Aliyah possible in 2021 despite COVID-related challenges.
We connected Jews in 65+ countries across the globe to each other and to Israel in 2021, impacting over 1.2 million lives.
In 2021, we supported tens of thousands of Israelis at risk and in need, and cultivated future Israeli leaders.