Pittsburgh Grandparents + Grandchildren: Don’t Miss the Jewish Journey of a Lifetime

Feb. 21, 2019 [Pittsburgh, PA] – Grandparents can play a pivotal role in passing down Jewish values and traditions to younger generations, but busy lifestyles, long distances and limited one-on-one time makes finding ways to have meaningful connections with grandchildren challenging. A new program funded by Partnership2Gether of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh and spearheaded by Rodef Shalom Congregation in partnership with Beth El Congregation, is now giving families new ways to connect, bond, and discover together through a shared Jewish journey in the G2 Global Intergenerational Initiative.

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The G2 Global Intergenerational Initiative is an innovative, activity-based program for grandparents and their grandchildren in 4th through 7th grades. This unique program allows participants to explore family narratives, values and legacies around Jewish experiences in engaging ways, culminating in a trip to Israel in December 2019 with other grandparents and grandchildren (GP/GC) from Pittsburgh, the nation, and around the world.

“We are thrilled the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh reached out to us to help lead the charge, in partnership with Beth El Congregation and the Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI), to bring this groundbreaking intergenerational program to the entire Pittsburgh Jewish community,” said Barry Weisband, Murray Klein Executive Director at Rodef Shalom Congregation. “We are excited to be part of the team that is building our local GP/GC cohort.”

The trip to Israel presents a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to build meaningful, lasting memories between grandparents and their grandchildren. Lorie Eckert, a grandmother from Cincinnati, Ohio, participated in the G2 pilot program last year and found the experience to be life-changing for herself and her granddaughter, Tillie.  

“When I embarked on this G2 adventure, I hoped I would form a greater bond with Tillie, and I did! What a great bonus it was though, to also bond with my broader family; the people of Israel!” Eckert said. “What an amazing trip!”

As a special part of their experience, the Cohort will have the opportunity to connect with and stay overnight in the homes of GP/GC pairs from their respective Partnership2Gether sister cities in Israel, which for members of Pittsburgh’s Cohort, will be the Karmiel/Misgav region.  This will provide a unique opportunity for participants to gain an authentic, inside perspective of Israeli life, which few tourists are ever afforded.

JAFI subsidizes a large portion of the total program cost. The participant fee is $1,750 per person, which is less than half of what a trip of this kind typically costs. The price includes all meals, accommodations and travel in Israel, as well as the monthly sessions and activities leading up to the trip. The airfare is not included.  

Other subsidies include $818 scholarships for all participating children who live in the Greater Pittsburgh area, thanks to the generosity of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh. In addition, a gift of $800 toward the Israel trip will be given to the first five GP/GC pairs who register, regardless of need or congregational affiliation, with appreciation from Rodef Shalom Congregation.  

For more information or to register, please call Kristin Karsh at 412- 621-6566 x120 or karsh@rodefshalom.org.  Space is limited.

Rodef Shalom Congregation has been a beacon in the Reform Jewish community for more than 150 years. From the middle of the 19th century onward, our congregation has pushed for the modernization of Jewish thought and practice. We are a congregation made up of individuals and families; we are multi-generational, multi-cultural, interfaith and we’re saving a space for you too. Regardless of backgrounds, ours is a community that is socially engaged, spiritually mindful, and committed to ensuring the vitality of Jewish life across generations.

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Stephanie Rex

Director of Communications and Marketing

Rodef Shalom Congregation

rex@rodefshalom.org | 412.463.2942

Rodef Shalom