Shalom Life | February 28, 2015

What Independence Day Means to Young Israelis in Canada

Shalom Life talks to some of the young Israeli volunteers at Independence Day celebrations.

By: Nelly Lalany

Published: May 11th, 2011 in Culture » Society » Events

What Independence Day Means to Young Israelis in Canada

Toronto's Mel Lastman Square was jumping yesterday in celebration of Israeli Independence Day. The event catered to all age groups and walks of life inspiring a warm sense of unity among the Toronto Jewish Community. From bouncy houses and men on stilts to rock bands, the event brought smiles and an undeniably cheerful presence to North York Boulevard.

There were several youths in volunteer T-shirts happily walking around with handouts for their fellow community members. I was intrigued by this and decided to find out more about what it means to be a volunteer on this special day.

Kateya, a young girl who lived in Israel for nine years before moving back to Canada three years ago, left Israel because of war. "It was becoming dangerous to live there because they were taking in children to the army and navy." When asked about her thoughts on the importance of youth involvement in the Jewish community, she said, "I think it's important in any culture for youths to be involved."

Matthew, another young volunteer, recalls his life in Israel before moving to Canada two and a half years ago. "It was beautiful. We would be on the beach and watch the fireworks." He seems to remember his life back home fondly, but remains just as happy in Canada. "It's important because when people from Israel come to Canada they are exposed to so many cultures and they change their opinions on life. It's important to keep them in touch with what's happening in their home country."

The remarkable presence and excitement from youth volunteers was a beautiful sight leaving an imprint on my memory of the event. Israel and its people show resiliency, pride and compassion for their heritage. The people who participated in this event to celebrate their country's joyous day of independence could surely lead by example.

Madonna’s Israeli Hacker Has Been Indicted Madonna’s Israeli Hacker Has Been Indicted TrendingJustin Bieber Begs Seth Rogen to Roast Him Justin Bieber Begs Seth Rogen to Roast Him TrendingJewish Hall of Fame: David Selznick Jewish Hall of Fame: David Selznick Trending
 

Rest in Peace, Mr. Spock. You Will Be Dearly Missed

February 27, 2015 | By Daniel Koren
Rest in Peace, Mr. Spock. You Will Be Dearly Missed

Leonard Nimoy, actor, director, writer, musician, painter, and pop culture icon, dies at 83

Read More

Madonna’s Israeli Hacker Has Been Indicted

February 27, 2015 | By Ashley Baylen
Madonna’s Israeli Hacker Has Been Indicted

Adi Lederman has been officially charged on four counts including computer trespassing.

Read More

'Clueless' Soundtrack to be Released as Yellow and Black Plaid Vinyl

February 27, 2015 | By Ashley Baylen
'Clueless' Soundtrack to be Released as Yellow and Black Plaid Vinyl

The seminal 90's soundtrack is being re-released for the film's 20th anniversary

Read More

Justin Bieber Begs Seth Rogen to Roast Him

February 27, 2015 | By Ashley Baylen
Justin Bieber Begs Seth Rogen to Roast Him

The pop singer reaches out to Rogen via Twitter in hopes he'll appear on his upcoming Comedy Central special.

Read More

Israeli Doctor Resorts to Crowdfunding to Treat Three-Year-Old Girl's Disease

February 27, 2015 | By NoCamels Team
Israeli Doctor Resorts to Crowdfunding to Treat Three-Year-Old Girl's Disease

Due to high expenses, Dr. Shomron sought to raise necessary funds for his patient from individual donors over the Internet

Read More

Madonna: Europe Feels like "Nazi Germany"

February 27, 2015 | By Daniel Koren
Madonna: Europe Feels like "Nazi Germany"

"anti-Semitism is at an all time high" says the acclaimed singer/songwriter

Read More

Israeli Teen Wins First Round of European Chess Championship

February 27, 2015 | By Roi Yanovsky
Israeli Teen Wins First Round of European Chess Championship

17-year-old Itay Westreich beats current Israeli champion Victor Mikhalevski in first round of championship in Jerusalem

Read More

Organizers Halt Tel Aviv Marathon Due to Heat

February 27, 2015 | By Shahar Hay
Organizers Halt Tel Aviv Marathon Due to Heat

Two men participating in annual run lose consciousness due to heat stroke, both under sedation and ventilated; 75 others treated on scene; major streets closed off in Tel Aviv

Read More

More Headlines