Our Journey Begins: Celebrating Tikvah at 50 and Opening Day at Mashabei Sadeh

ramahridehikeSouthern Israel Trip 2019

Video | Tuesday, April 2 | After more than a year of preparation, the 2019 Ramah Israel Bike Ride and Hiking Trip to raise funds for Ramah Tikvah programs has begun! Our riders and hikers will journey through Southern Israel, beginning at Mashabei Sadeh and heading south through the Negev to Eilat.

Many of us gathered in Jerusalem on Monday night for a celebration of Tikvah at 50 and to honor Barbara and Herb Greenberg, founders of the first Tikvah program in 1970, with a lifetime achievement award. We were joined by Sar-Shalom Jerbi, Director of the Education Department of KKL-JNF, a major sponsor of our 2019 trip, and by a singing group from AKIM Israel, the largest provider of services to individuals with disabilities. It was a wonderful celebration of the National Ramah Tikvah Network of programs for campers with disabilities.

(L-R) Herb Greenberg, Barbara Greenberg, Howard Blas (National Ramah Tikvah Director), Amy Skopp Cooper (National Ramah Associate Director) Click here or on image to see more photos from TIkvah at 50.

Today, our riders and hikers arrived in Mashabei Sadeh for opening day. Much preparation has been taking place, including setting up bikes, giving out clothes and gear, detailed briefings from our professional staff from Gordon Active, practice rides, a map overview, and safety instructions–and we are ready to go!

Our riders and hikers began to bond as a group, sharing Ramah stories as well as biking and hiking tips. Ranging in age from 13-79, our riders and hikers represent several generations; locations throughout the U.S., Canada, and Israel, and all Ramah camp regions. We have 112 participants overall.

Video: Opening Day at Mashabei Sadeh

A great cheer went up from the group this evening when we announced that our collective fundraising efforts have now raised $508,000 from more than 2,700 donors! All is now ready for our launch. After Shacharit and breakfast, our riders and hikers will depart for their day in the Western Negev. Riders will choose one of three routes daily, averaging 25, 45, or 65 miles each day. Hikers will begin tomorrow in the Hatira Canyon just outside the Yerucham Crater and hike through many beautiful and scenic trails as they traverse Southern Israel. Our trip will culminate with all riders and hikers meeting up in Eilat next Monday.

We extend our deep appreciation to all those whose support has enabled us to raise these needed funds for Tikvah programs, and many thanks to all of those who have wished us a safe and enjoyable trip.

Layla Tov from Mashabei Sadeh.