Taking Strides to Make Strides / Rebecca Lee, Yahel Social Change Program Participant

A couple of months ago, Dana told us about an idea she and Cheli, our Associate Director, had to organize a team of runners to run in a joint fundraiser for Yahel and Friends by Nature at the Tel Aviv Marathon.  Later that night, I looked into fundraising options and emailed Dana to let her know I was interested in helping.  I had no idea what I was getting into.  Within a few days I was in contact with Cheli and we were researching fundraising platforms and talking about how to go about putting together a team.  I also, in the hopes of setting a good example, volunteered to run.  After this conversation, I was terrified.  I had no idea what I had to offer if I knew nothing about organizing a running team and I was certainly not a runner.

The first step was recruiting runners.  I was in charge of getting as many of the Yahelnikim (Yahel participants) to join the team.  With the help of several announcements and some peer pressure, I am happy to say that all eight of us are running!  I also reached out to the Yahel alumni to ask them for their help promoting our cause.  I was surprised and touched by all the kind and thoughtful responses I got.  The run got more exciting when the Schusterman Foundation’s ROI Community agreed to match all of our donations 1:1 up to $5,000!

As of today we have a team of 23 runners running a combined 223km!  We are a team of North Americans and Israelis, from the Shapira community and beyond, running together to raise money and promote awareness about Shapira and the wonderful people in it.  We are “taking strides to make strides” towards a multicultural Israeli society.  I am so proud to be a member of this wonderful community and am so excited to run for something that I truly believe in.

For more information about our campaign or to donate please visit: http://www.indiegogo.com/YahelFriendsByNature/x/1897096.

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