By Sydney Gold
During the past week our unit participated in separate three day tracks called Chavayot. I had the pleasure of partaking in the Tikun Olam track, a social action program during which myself and 30 other reform Jewish teens dedicated our days to service work of all forms. From ethical farming to food insecurity to life with disabilities, we Tikun Olam participants explored the many facets of social action and the communities it affects.
Still, a specific moment that stands out to me when recalling my time in Tikun Olam was our last day of programming. We dedicated our final day to volunteering at a care facility for adults with disabilities both physical and mental. We spent a couple hours working with and getting to know the residents, concluding our visit with a dance party. During this event, a specific woman reached out to me and spent the entirety of the party dancing and conversing with me, an interaction culminating with her falling asleep in my arms. It is moments like these that have allowed me to reflect upon myself and the impact I can make upon people. When tasked with repairing the world, it can feel as though an immovable mountain sits in your wake, and yet, small moments of human connection are what truly make an impact on not only those whom you help, but yourself as well. I feel proud to say I have walked away from my Tikun Olam program not only having made an impact on the world, but as a changed person, and can’t wait to take on the final week of our trip.