SHEFA - Women's Journey through Israel - March 2019 - Via Sabra

SHEFA - Women's Journey through Israel - March 2019

March 6-14, 2019

Shefa is a trip just for women, a journey that combines the special energy generated within a group of women with the abundance that Israel has to offer- spiritual abundance, culinary abundance, creative abundance, and natural abundance.

With this in mind, we offer an itinerary that includes meetings with strong Israeli women, a focus on Israel cuisine, participatory visits to unique places, and a connection to Judaism and spirituality. 


• Meet inspiring women who are leaders in religious, political, and social action organizations in Israel.
• Experience classic sites in unique ways.
• Through volunteering, understand some of the challenges Israel faces and take a small role in addressing these challenges. 
• Explore and celebrate the issues facing Israel’s multicultural fabric.
• Celebrate International Women’s Day.
• Embrace Shabbat through community, rest, sharing, and ritual.
• Eat great food. 


Group leader: Shawna Goodman Sone is a trained chef from the Natural Gourmet Cooking School and the Institute of Culinary Education (formerly Peter Kumps's cooking school) in New York City. Shawna was the editor of a Canadian best seller cookbook called Panache which raised close to $160 000 dollars for the Jewish General Hospital in Montreal. Shawna has been teaching and catering for the past 25 years in Montreal, Toronto, Philadelphia and New York City and currently Raanana. She is married with three sons and is very excited to be leading this incredible journey.


Click HERE for the registration form


Day 1: Wednesday, March 6 - Welcome to Israel!


Relax, get acquainted with the area, and adjust yourself to local time.


17:00 Meet at Herbert Samuel Hotel- Opening Program.  Get to know one another.


Opening Dinner in Jerusalem at Anna in the Anna Ticho House, a 200-year-old Jerusalem landmark.  Anna Restaurant was established by Dualis Yozma as a social business that trains and employs youth in distress, providing them with an opportunity to acquire a profession and to change the course of their lives.


Overnight: Herbert Samuel Hotel, Jerusalem



Day 2: Thursday, March 7 - Jerusalem Through Multiple Lenses


Breakfast at the hotel- You’ve heard the legend, now taste it for yourself!  Breakfast each morning in the hotel dining room.


Visit the Naggar School of Arts, located in the Musrara neighborhood on the seam line between East and West Jerusalem: This higher education institute for interdisciplinary art qualifies students for professional and artistic activities with a commitment to the community and social activism, using Jerusalem as a multiple identity ground for authentic and experimental creativity.


Join a professional art photographer in a Smartphone Photography Workshop.  Learn to transform your photos from your smartphone or any other pocket camera from dull and ordinary to beautiful and unique photos.  During your time in the Old City practice your new skills.


Experience Jerusalem’s Old City in a unique way through Tastes of Jerusalem. Tour off-the-beaten track sites and winding alleyways in the Old City of Jerusalem while stopping for tastes of Jerusalem delicacies such as the famous etrog juice, a Jerusalem beigele, hummus at Lina’s, baklava, k’nafae or Jerusalem kugel.

Walk through the Machane Yehuda Market to pick up the last touches for a short cooking workshop and dinner.


After dinner in the streets of Geula and Mea Shearim, buzzing in preparation for Shabbat, take an evening Challah Tour.


Overnight: Herbert Samuel Hotel, Jerusalem



Day 3: Friday, March 8 - International Women’s Day


Breakfast at the hotel


Meet with a female Member of Knesset for her reflections on International Women’s Day.


Depart Jerusalem with a quick stop in Abu Ghosh at Al Yasmin for what is known as the country’s best tehina and halva.


Taste wine and hear the incredible story of the Bat Shlomo Winery and settlement, founded by Baron Edmund de Rothschild.


At Goats with the Wind, have a magical lunch at this family-owned goat cheese farm and restaurant.  Everything you will eat comes from the farm.  Meet the goats and enjoy the special touches of the place. 


Before arriving at the hotel, take an easy hike to enjoy the incredible natural surroundings of the north before Shabbat.


Check into the hotel and prepare for Shabbat.


Special Kabbalat Shabbat to focus us on moving from the ‘chol’ (ordinary) to the ‘kodesh’ (holy) and to transform the energy of the trip so far towards enhancing the beauty of Shabbat.


Shabbat Dinner


Overnight: Amirey HaGalil Boutique Hotel, Amirim 



Day 4: Saturday, March 9 - Shabbat Abundance


Breakfast at the hotel


This day will include opportunities for Yoga, spa treatments, rest, and conversation.


Lunch at the hotel


Wine and cheese


Make the transition between Shabbat and the new week with the Havdalah service.


In a Druze home, participate in a cooking workshop and dinner that is a hands-on, true to life cultural immersion that’s not just about good eating but, rather about exploring foreign cultures through taste smell and experience.


Overnight: Amirey HaGalil Boutique Hotel, Amirim



Day 5: Sunday, March 10 - Nurturing and Being Nurtured by the Land


Breakfast at the hotel


Through volunteering, understand some of the challenges Israel faces and take a small role in addressing these challenges.  At Bar Kaima Farm in Hukuk cook lunch using the farm’s produce to serve to the youth who are changing their lives through their work at the farm. 

Visit and lunch at Farma Cultura, an organic farm in coastal plains of Israel.  The farmland is nurtured by Permaculture methods – a philosophy of agricultural ecosystems that work with nature designed to be sustainable and self-sufficient by looking at plants and animals in all their functions.


Meet Michal Bitterman, CEO and founder of The Natural Step Israel which acts to promote strategic sustainability in the Israeli society, using the lens of innovation and quality. Their mission is to catalyze and ensure a systemic change to create a sustainable society in Israel that thrives within its natural surroundings.


Drive to Tel Aviv with a stop for a birds-eye-view of Tel Aviv and a toast to the group on top of Azrieli Tower.


Check into hotel in Tel Aviv


Dinner with Joanna Landau, founder of Vibe Israel, which aims to change the way Israel is perceived in global public opinion. Vibe, Israel's flagship project offers weeklong trips to Israel to online opinion leaders, generating third party endorsement of Israel's competitive advantages to millions of people worldwide


Overnight: Hotel in Tel Aviv - TBD



Day 6: Monday, March 11 - Empowering Ourselves and Others


Breakfast at the hotel


Start the morning with a Krav Maga workshop with Rachel Shear.  Rachel empowers women to feel safe and strong through this Israeli martial art


Meet Julie Fisher, spouse of former U.S. Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro, who devotes her time to caring for African asylum-seekers who have found their way to Israel in the past 10 years.   With Julie, visit a Unitaf early childhood center, where we see educators providing a safe place for the children of asylum-seekers to learn and grow. Director Ofira Ben-Shlomo shares the story of how the Tel Aviv community found a way to respond to dozens of unsafe children’s “warehouses” where children spent hours languishing in cribs without any human touch


Next, travel to colorful Kuchinate: African Refugee Women’s Cooperative, for a coffee ceremony and to hear the story of this incredible social start-up. Meet founders Diddy Mymin Kahn and Sister Aziza, who have turned the lives of refugee women around by empowering them to find their voices and regain their dignity after very difficult life circumstances. 


Tasting tour-lunch in Shuk Levinsky, one of Israel’s most interesting markets with a focus on spices and specialty foods.


Street Art Tour of Florentine with Shirel Horowitz.  Shirel is a multi-disciplinary artist and educator.  See an Israel that you might not know through the Street Art Graffiti Tour found in Tel Aviv’s Florentine neighborhood.  This interactive tour with a talented artist and actor gives you the inside track of Israel’s culture.


Meet Dr. Ofra Graicer, an Expert in Operational Design and Strategic Thinking. Graicer is a lead instructor in the combat command of the Israeli Defense Force, preparing senior commanders for serving at the general staff, and guiding them through the process of structuring strategies and special operations in the new age. In the fascinating talk she’s preparing for us, we will get actual insights on how to prepare for future wars, and not the ones that were.


Dinner on your own in Tel Aviv


Overnight: Hotel in Tel Aviv - TBD



Day 7: Tuesday, March 12 - Living on the Edge


Breakfast at the hotel

Striving for Peace- drive to Netiv Haasarah, a moshav on the western border of Israel with the Gaza Strip.  Visit the Peace Wall on the border.

Meet Tsamaret Zamir, an artist and the creator of the project who will talk about life in the moshav in the shadow of the ongoing security situation – and about the hope of a good and peaceful future.  Choose a colorful optimistic tile on which to write a personal wish and later glue to the border wall.


In Netivot, meet immigrants from North Africa who are dedicated to preserving culture through food through the “Tavlinim” group, Hebrew for “spices,” which was created by Netivot’s Social Services Department to empower women on welfare to earn extra income.   Enjoy a lunch of North African-Israeli food.


Continue to Lakiya Negev Bedouin Weaving, established in 1991 as an income generation project for Palestinian Bedouin women living in villages and encampments in the Negev desert in the south of Israel.   Through the network of 6 women's centers across the area, approximately 150 Bedouin women are provided with an opportunity to develop the traditional skills of spinning and weaving the wool, to acquire new roles and skills in dyeing, production, and business management, and to earn incomes through the work.


Drive to Beresheet hotel and check in.  Dinner at the hotel


Overnight: Beresheet Hotel, Mitzpe Ramon



Day 8: Wednesday, March 13 - “In the Desert, You Can Remember Your Name”


Breakfast at the hotel


Explore the magnificent Ramon Crater by Jeep and by foot. 


Continue to the Lasha Desert Bread Workshop and “bring forth bread from the earth” with Hadas, spiritual baker and teacher.

With the bread you’ve made as the base, eat lunch in Lasha’s back patio.


Explore the Artists’ Quarter of Mitzpe Ramon including visits to galleries and to learn about Amutat Dror which, among other things, runs a community food co-op to respond to the needs of the community.


Time to enjoy the facilities of the beautiful Beresheet Hotel.


Dinner at the hotel


Evening walk and star-gazing


Overnight: Beresheet Hotel, Mitzpe Ramon



Day 9: Thursday, March 14 - Working Together, Bringing it Home


Breakfast at the hotel


Depart to Sde Boker to be reminded of the vision of David and Paula Ben Gurion.  Take a few minutes for silent reflection on how you’ll bring Shefa home with you as an inspiration.


Continue to Beit HaShanti founded in 1984 and serving both as a temporary home and long-term support for runaway, homeless youth at risk aged 14-21 from all population strata and sectors. The Shanti House takes care of youth in immediate danger or those liable to get into physical violence, sexual abuse, delinquency, prostitution, etc. and implements a preventive program for youth at risk around Israel.  You’ll be asked to bring useful donated items from your home country to donate to Beit HaShanti. 


Drive to Beer Sheva for an immersion into Ethiopian life and culture in Israel.


Begin with an Ethiopian vegetarian lunch and continue with an Ethiopian Cultural tour including the first synagogue of Ethiopian Jews in Israel, the Ethiopian neighborhood and the Fereda Aklum Square and Garden, named for the pioneer of the Ethiopian Jewish immigration.


Finish the visit in Beer Sheva with an Ethiopian dance workshop.


To culminate the trip, take time to reflect on the days spent in Israel and share the experiences, sites, and people encountered along the way. With the "Kol HaOt" team, explore the personal meaning of the Shefa Journey using colors and symbols to create a visual picture of what this experience meant to you.


Closing dinner at Majda, classic Israeli-Arab Fusion restaurant in Ein Rafah


Transfer to Airport or other



Please note: Itinerary subject to change




Price per person (in a double room) - $3600

Single supplement - $1350

$500 deposit is due upon decision to book, to secure your spot. (non refundable)

Balance due - January 15, 2019


Click HERE for the registration form


• Transportation throughout the trip for all programmed activities
• Services of a licensed Tour Guide and Group Leader throughout the trip
• Hotels throughout the trip including breakfast
• All meals as specified on itinerary (one dinner excluded)
• All site entry fees and activities in the itinerary


Not included:
• Airfare
• Travel and health insurance (recommended)
• Tips for tour guide and drivers
• Transfers to and from the airport-  this can be arranged upon request.

$ 500
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$500 deposit per person due upon decision to book, to secure a space, and is non refundable.

By January 15th, 2019 - Balance due

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Cancellation Policy
• Cancellations up to 90 days prior to departure $500 p/p will be charged (non-refundable deposit)
• 89 to 60 days prior to departure the cancellation penalty will be 20% of the total tour cost per person
• 59 to 30 days prior to departure the cancellation penalty will be 50% of the total tour cost per person
• 29 to 8 days prior to departure the cancellation penalty will be 75% of the total tour cost per person
• Up to 7 days prior to departure the cancellation penalty will be 100% of the total tour cost per person