Shanah Tovah from Tivnu

By Sasha Pitkofsky Hello All. I hope everyone is having a sweet start to their new year. On Erev Rosh Hashanah we hosted a dinner with 19 people. It was very pleasant, although we ran out of grape juice. We got both Monday and Tuesday off. I was lucky enough to celebrate the holiday by attending services in the woods complete with a potluck and two golden retriever puppies. It was beautiful. On Tuesday night we walked to the bridge to do Taschlikh. After Rosh Hashana, I went back to work. Three days a week I work at Zenger Farms, an educational farm and CSA. ...

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Tivnusletter: A Sweet – and Action-Packed – New Year with Tivnu!

Welcome Threevnu Participants! Our third cohort of Tivnu Gap Year participants comes from California, Illinois, Maryland, New York, and Oregon. They are excited to join the Tivnu: Building Justice Gap Year Program for lots of different reasons: camping and hiking in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, working directly with people who can benefit from their skills – as teachers, gardeners, and cooks – and from whom they learn, as well, living together in a Jewish home, building skills and affordable homes with Habitat for Humanity, and much more. The 2016-17 ...

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First Threevnu Blogpost

By Ayla Landi Fontana My name is Ayla, and I am excited to be writing the first blog post of the year. I am one of the participants of the third year of Tivnu (aka Threevnu). We lovingly call ourselves Tivnoodles and our Madricha (advisor) calls us her Noodles. With all of the Tivnoodles running around the house, it’s always pretty energetic here. We’ve been getting acquainted with the organizations where we’ll intern, learning about affordable housing, exploring our neighborhood, and getting to know each other. I didn’t grow up in a practicing Jewish ...

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Goodbye and Thanks

By Max Drayer As you might know, this year's Tivnu gap year came to an end on Tuesday the 24th, so it’s time for the participants to go home. Although we are all sad that Tivnu is ending for us, it is time to go on with life. As the saying goes, the end is the beginning. We may be leaving Portland, but that does not mean our life is only just beginning: we choose where we go next.  During Tivnu, I made a lot of great memories. One of my favorite parts of Tivnu was all of the trips we took. Over Sukkot, we visited Opal Creek; it was very beautiful and the ...

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Tivnusletter: Becoming Part of the Tivnu Family

MALIA OBAMA IS COMING TO TIVNU? OK, so maybe Malia isn't signed up for Tivnu's gap year program (yet), but she and her parents have discovered the transformative possibilities of a gap year program. So have current Tivnu participants and their parents. Read here why Tivnu mom Beth "Missie" Polasky is jealous of her son Nadav's year with Tivnu. Read below for more first-person glimpses into the impact of the Tivnu gap year experience. TIVNU PARTICIPANTS AND THEIR PARENTS SAY... Dr. Susan Cohen, Mother of Sam I can honestly say our son is having an amazing ...

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Why I’m Jealous of My Son: Guest Post from a Tivnu Parent

by Beth “Missie” Polasky This might sound terrible, but I’m jealous of my son.  Nadav, 19, is part of the current Tivnu cohort (affectionately known as the Tivnoodles) and is having a wonderful year.  But enough about him (!) – this is about me, and my jealousy. Sam and I went out to Portland a few weeks ago to spend a few days with Nadav – to meet his friends, to see where he’s been working, and to explore some of his favorite spots in Portland with him. A little background: Sam and I each did a gap year – he represented Australian Habonim back in ...

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Tivnu Trip to Seattle

by Ben Lefkowitz On Monday March 14, the entire Tivnu group took a trip to Seattle. We started planning weeks in advance, deciding as a group where we wanted to go and what we wanted to do. It’s awesome that we get to take trips and see parts of the Pacific Northwest I might not have visited otherwise. From the moment we arrived at the City Hostel Seattle I felt that this would be great trip. The people at the front desk were very patient and happy. The rooms were very cool. After the Hostel opened in 2009, they had local artists decorate each of the rooms, so ...

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Tivnusletter 4: 5 Great Stories From Tivnu 2 — And The Chance To Be Part Of Tivnu 3!

HAPPY PURIM & HAPPY SPRING! The participants in the Tivnu Gap Year have been enjoying the beautiful Portland springtime, a great trip to Seattle, and the Jewish version of March Madness – the months of Adar including Purim. They've been connecting with each other and with their co-workers at places like Sisters of the Road and Johnson Creek Watershed Council, building homes with Habitat for Humanity, and honing the tools they can use to build a better world. WHAT'S NEW, TIVNU? What are the Tivnuniks and the press saying about the Tivnu gap year ...

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Short Talks on My Favorite Portland Destinations

by Hadara Goldsmith On Powell's~ The scent of freshly printed pages and crinkled old papers wafts into my nose as I step inside. I stare at walls of spines and rainbow rectangles on racks as I brush wet bangs from my eyes and unzip my soaked jacket. I walk slowly past the cashiers, across the pink room full of children's books, up the stairs, through the aisles of history books and arrive at my favorite section, the little corner on the second floor where they keep the lesbian literature and queer studies books. I drop my backpack on the floor and immediately ...

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A Shabbat at University of Oregon

by Josh Gidanian On February 26, we took a trip to Eugene, Oregon to get to know some college students over Shabbat. Despite a long drive in rainy weather, everyone was in good spirits and happy to go to Eugene to get to know some college students Friday was a wonderful night of prayers and lighting Shabbat candles at Hillel. The best part of services was recognizing all of the tunes- they really took me back to my USY years. After services, we ate a meal with the Hillel students, which included some delicious garlic bread challah. During dinner, we had a chance ...

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