Jared White, a former camper and staff, completed his military service with the IDF last year. While still a soldier, Jared became involved with the Michael Levin Memorial Center for Lone Soldiers in Jerusalem. He now works there as Director of Programming. Here is what Jared had to say about the Center and his new job:
The Michael Levin Memorial Center for Lone Soldiers is a very special place. It was started by former IDF lone soldiers to help future lone soldiers along their path. I have seen our dream come true since we opened the Center last summer. I volunteered with prospective lone soldiers. One of the biggest problems they face is not knowing how to go about it or even understanding what they want to do during their service. What we do here at the Center is talk to them, get to know them, give them the information they need to help them succeed during their service. I feel such a connection to every single one of our Lone Soldiers. There was never a place like this when I served and I cannot tell you how much of a difference it makes in these soldiers lives. We help them find an apartment, make sure they receive all of their rights, or sit down with them for a cup of coffee after their best friend was killed. It doesn’t matter to us if the kid is from Russia, Brazil or Australia; we are here to help. All of the staff here knows all to well what it is like to serve in the IDF without a family. We try and help them with these challenges one step at a time, 24/7, Shabbat and holidays. We are here so lone soldiers no longer have to feel alone.
Jared remembered the young camper, Lizzy Feldman, from CJ. The two became reacquainted at the Jerusalem Marathon when Lizzy, now on Year Course, helped raise support for Lone Soldiers. During her visit home during Pesach, Lizzy spoke at Ohr Kodesh Congregation in Chevy Chase, MD on something unique to Israel. She talked about the IDF and the Lone Soldiers. Lizzy will return from Israel in time to be on staff at CJ this summer.
To learn more about the Center or to make a donation, please visit www.lonesoldiercenter.com.