11 Oct New olim come together to build Sukkah
The residents at the Jerusalem Ulpan Etzion Absorption Center learned about Sukkot and did arts and crafts to prepare to build and decorate a Sukkah. Esther, a recent oleh (immigrant to Israel) from Los Angeles, was thrilled to be able to participate in the experience. Growing up traditional, Esther has always felt a strong connection to Israel and wanted to live there.
“In the States, I have always felt like I couldn’t find my place. I went to public school and being Jewish there was hard,” said Esther. “I wanted to be home and to feel like I’m a part of something bigger… and in Israel, I feel that. This is my county and my home. And I feel like here I am so much more spiritual.”
Being part of the community at Ulpan Etzion has been essential to Esther and has helped her settle into her new home. She credits the amazing and knowledgeable staff and interesting classes, as well as everyone feeling like one big family, with easing her transition. When she was asked to help build a Sukkah with other Ulpan Etzion olim, she was excited to do so for the first time.
“I’d never really built a sukkah before, only decorated one with small homemade decorations. Doing this helped me bond with other Ulpan students who I now hang out with often which is so nice. Doing this made me very excited for the holiday,” shared Esther. “It was such a great and meaningful experience because I learned more about the holiday and got to actually build and put the sukkah together rather than just decorate it.”
Watch below as these new olim come together to build a Sukkah — and make sure your volume is turned up!