A screenshot from the virtual tour
A screenshot from the virtual tour. (The Jewish Agency for Israel)

Michigan residents were provided the opportunity to immerse themselves in the Central Galilee region and meet people while they work out on a treadmill and “run” with the tour guides or relax on a sofa.

As part of its ongoing efforts to facilitate greater connections between Israel and world Jewry, the Jewish Agency for Israel’s Central Galilee and Michigan partnership hosted a virtual running tour of the Central Galilee region to celebrate Yom HaAtzmaut (Israel’s Independence Day).

Israeli participants in the Partnership2Gether network (P2G) hosted the virtual running tours of Central Galilee areas to provide Michigan residents with the opportunity to immerse themselves in that region and meet its people while they work out on a treadmill and “run” with the tour guides or relax on a sofa.

The Central Galilee tour represented the Jewish Agency’s latest initiative to maintain and grow the closeness between Israeli and diaspora Jews during a period when the COVID-19 pandemic has limited, if not halted, travel between Israel and North America.

Central Galilee Michigan
The Jewish Agency for Israel

“Whether it be in extraordinary or more normal times, Jews from Israel and around the world routinely find creative ways to bond over their shared connection to the Land of Israel and to each other,” said Director of Partnership2Gether Pnina Agenyahu. “The Jewish Agency is committed to continuing its work to bridge the distance between Israeli and Jewish communities, on Yom HaAtzmaut and year-round, as a crucial vehicle for uniting the global Jewish people.” 

Michigan’s P2G participants toured the hub of immigration absorption in Migdal HaEmek, where Jews from many different backgrounds and origins from North Africa, the former Soviet Union, Ethiopia and more live together; Zippori, where they delved into thousands of years of history in the magnificent archeological site of the ancient town that played an essential role in the conservation and reviving of Jewish faith and traditions; and the diverse city of Nof HaGalil, including its archeology and its breathtaking views of the Galilee, all the way down to the ancient streets of Nazareth.

Central Galilee Michigan
The Jewish Agency for Israel

Participants in Michigan were also able to meet the new shinshinim (service year emissaries), who will be joining the community next year.

Since 1994, the Michigan communities of Metropolitan Detroit, Ann Arbor and Grand Rapids have partnered with the Israeli municipalities of Migdal HaEmek, Nof HaGalil, and the Jezreel Valley, which are all located in the Central Galilee. 

This particular P2G partnership focuses on building a vibrant Jewish future, including through the Michigan communities’ support for an English-language instruction program that reaches more than 4,000 students in 35 schools throughout the Central Galilee, providing students with skills they need to succeed in Israeli society.