Matan Responds to the War

By Matan Levi, Workshop/Shnat Shorashim Madricha, MBI Madricha 2023 and Mosh Shlicha 2022

My name is Matan, I'm from Dror Israel in Kvutzat Nissan. We live in Hadera which from the start of the war didn't get any sirens or anything of that kind, it's kinda quiet here and can be weird sometimes given everything that's going on.

My current messima is to be the shorashim madricha of the Shnat program. I’m on tzevet Shorashim with two of my kvutza members and one friend from our shichva who lives in Petach Tikva.

On the 3rd week of Shorashim and Shnat we weren't expecting everything to go downhill so fast. The program is happening on Ein Hashofet, it's a kibbutz not far from where I live in Hadera so it's also very quiet and safe there.

Each day looks really different. We and the Shnat madrichimot have a lot of conversations with the chanichimot about the current situation and it's been very tough for all of us to deal with it, both ourselves and for the chanichimot.

As I'm writing this there is already a chanich who got on an emergency flight and others who have either booked flights or are thinking about it. The feeling of hopelessness and sadness is huge for all of us but also we are trying very hard to make sure we all take care of our mental health and have some sort of routine to maintain balance and not get too spiraled with bad thoughts.

We had the chance to run an activity on kibbutz with kids who either came for shelter from the south or are kids of parents who came to visit their family. They were grateful for what we did and I feel that it made all of us feel more like we, too, have the ability to help out.

I think that for the long run education may be the most important thing we can do to prevent getting out of this war broken to a million pieces. We need to care for our society, for people’s mental state and moral strength, in the here and now and for the sake of our future.

There are so many thoughts going through my head.

This is a war.

It's important to maintain a sense of humanity in it.

I love every one of the chanichimot who are on the program now, and I just want to hug them and say it will be fine. And as much as I believe the words I'm saying, it is still so unpredictable that sometimes I need a hug for myself. For anyone who's reading this, I love you all no matter who or what you are, and I hope we can all find peace and be together.

All of the words I'm getting from loved ones warm my heart. Hoping for better days and sending my love to anyone who got harmed in any way, mentally or physically by this horrible war.

Much love <3