Home > Timeline > 2009 > WHY AM I HERE?

“It is the best Jewish event because it allows people to choose to do whatever they want. I can chill out here, I can meet new people, and I can meet fascinating professionals and experts from every field who I normally wouldn’t be able to see. Limmud Jerusalem has its own vibe. It’s unbelievable.”

Boris Shindler, 28
Tel Aviv
Originally from Ukraine

“I would not forgive myself if I missed this event. For Russian Jews in Israel, this is the main event. Here, I can find information and knowledge, but even more I can socialize with my friends, who are here for several days out of their real life to just get involved in the world of Jewish cultural education. I need to have an experience like this at least once a year.”

Alexander Koyfman, 35
Originally from Ukraine

“It’s nice to hear different points of view and to see how people pay attention even though they come from different backgrounds. The interest of the people here is in being part of this community as an Israeli, It’s nice to see that. As long as you are part of this country, and take part in its activities and obligations, you are an Israeli, and it’s the most important thing. It is nice to see people gathering here and exploring this.”

Aya Mohr
Tel Aviv
Israel native, performer and participant at Limmud

“It is full of interesting people, interesting teachers, interesting atmosphere, some interesting everything. Especially the teachers are interesting. You cannot meet them in life, so you find them here, and just to hear them and to take all of their knowledge and learn from them is great.”

Lena Makaranets, 28
Tel Aviv
Originally from Sverdlovsk, Russia

“I volunteered at the Ashkelon Limmud last year. It was a very great experience that made me feel a part of this organization and gave me satisfaction and pride in being part of it’s success. This is really a festival, not just a conference, and it is important to bring closer the Russian ‘ghetto’ culture to the Israeli sabra culture.”

Veronica Birman, 22
Born in Bellarussia

“This is one of the few opportunities for the Russian speakers in Israel to be together in one place and to discuss all the questions they have about their Jewish identity, about their interactions with the local culture, and their successes and failures. Limmud is one place where this interaction can take place. Russian speakers here in Israel always want to intertwine their Russian identity and their Jewish and their Israeli one. This is one of the places where such a trial can be very resultative.”

Michael Pellivert, 26
Originally from Georgia

“There a lot of people from Russia not connected to Israel here, so it’s a very good idea to make this program. I was at the first Limmud in Ashkelon and so this year I have brought my son, 13 years old. For me it’s very important for both of us to come and see Jewish and Israeli culture and to learn. And we’re in Jerusalem. This is my favorite place in the whole world.”

Olga Minkov,
Arad, Israel
Originally from Minsk

“It is useful for me to increase knowledge. Here there are lectures on different topics and you can develop yourself. And also there is opportunity for communication between people from different towns and cities in Israel and there is the chance to make friends and communicate.”

Anna Busha, 23
Be’er Sheva, Israel
Originally from Kiev

“I feel I am making a huge contribution by being a volunteer on the programming committee for this Limmud. I don’t think I am learning to do something new, but making a contribution to widen the circle of Limmud participants is very, very important.”

Eliezer Lesovoy, 33
Originally from Kiev

“I heard from some friends who were at the last Limmud in Ashkelon that they had much fun and they talked about it for awhile. This is about knowledge for me, and feeling good and having some experience that I don’t even expect to know what it is or will be, and to get to know my Jewish side more than I do know is a possibility too.”

Kfenya Elkun, 44
Originally from Moscow

“I like the idea that lecturers are also students, and students are also lecturers. Also, I want to earn knowledge, which is very important. I do feel very connected to my Jewish identity and my Russian identity, but it is one more experience in my life and all experiences are important and valuable.”

Riva Stradubsky, 23
Originally from Ukraine

“There are several specific lectures that I’m interested in here, and I have some very good friends of mine mingling around here and I want to be sociable and friendly and spend time together. As soon as we get more adult, we spend less time together with friends unfortunately. I’m so tightly connected already to my Jewishness, in my mind and my behavior, but to be here and reinforce this is always valuable.”

Michael Riskin, 34
Originally from Moscow