January 30, 2018

From The Desk Of The Mazkirim: January 2018

Shalom Channichim, Bogrim and Parents

It’s been an absolute whirlwind of a start to 2018 with tons of activity already having taken place in the movement throughout January.

Each month a new edition of From the Desk of the Mazkirim will be sent out in order for all to keep up with what’s happening in the different spheres of the movement and to see all upcoming events nationally and within our kenim.

Aleh Ve’Hagshem

Jess Levitt                       Zac “Shekky” Fleishman                 Daniel Sussman
  Mazkira Klalit                           S’gan Mazkir Klali                              Gizbar

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  1. Introducing the new Mazkirut of 2018
  2. Machaneh17 Na’aleh
  3. Ken Updates
  4. From The Desk of the Shaliach: Danny Adeno Abebe
  5. Shnat 2018 Update

Introducing thenew Mazkirut Artzit  and Leadership for 2018

This year our Mazkirut consists of Jess Levitt asMazkira Klalit, Zac “Shekky” Fleishman as S’gan Mazkir Klali and Daniel Sussman as the Gizbar (Treasurer). All three of them have been heavily involved in HDSA for over a decade and were elected to be apart of leading the movement in 2018.

Jess was a channicha from 2007-2011, Bonim madricha in 2012, Shnat Participant 2013, Shtilim madricha 2013, S’ganit Rosh Bogrim CT 2014, Sollelim madricha 2014, Rosh Mazkirut CT 2015, Israel Leadership Tour Particpant 2015, Rosh Bonim 2015, Rosh Sollelim 2016, S’ganit Mazkira 2017, S’ganit Rosh Machaneh 2017 and Rosh Israel Leadership Tour 2017. With an immense amount of experience under her belt, Jess is ready to continue leading the movement to great places in 2018. Jess is also currently studying for her degree in psychology through UNISA part time while working full time with Habonim. Jess has also recently been elected as the head of the Zionist Youth Council of Johannesburg which is very exciting.

Zac was a channich 2006-2012, Amelim madrich 2013, Shnat Participant 2014, Sollelim madrich 2014, Sayarim madrich 2015, Shomrim madrich 2016, Rosh Ken CT 2017, Israel Leadership Tour Participant 2017, Ra’am Shnat Co-ordinator 2017, Youth Worker 2017 and Rosh Amelim 2017. Zac currently resides in Cape Town with a group of people that he went on Shnat with in 2014. Zac studies a BA in History and Drama at the University of Cape Town.

Daniel was a channich 2007-2013, Shtilim madrich 2014, Shnat participant 2015, Bonim madrich 2015, Rosh Bogrim JHB 2016, S’gan Rosh Amelim 2016, Rosh Ken JHB 2017 and Rosh Sollelim 2017. Daniel lives at the Habonim Bayit in Johannesburg alongside Jess and two other members of the movement. Daniel is studying towards his degree in Actuarial Sciences at the University of Witwaterstrand.

All three of them just spent about a week in Israel on Seminar Yeud where they spent an expansive amount of time discussing and creating their vision for the year and how to be the Movement Workers for the year. They were also able to engage with our sister youth movement, Ha’Noar Ha’Oved Ve’Halomed, where they went to see how their kenim worked and learn how we can enhance our kenim here in South Africa.

We’d like to also take this opportunity to introduce our Hanhaggah Artzit (National Executive) as well as Tafkid holders for 2018:

  • Erin Gordon and Eden Plein – Roshei JHB Ken (Hanhaggah Members)
  • Amber Gordon and Brad Mervis – Roshei Bogrim JHB (Hanhaggah Members)
  • Gabi Saven and Zena Kruss van der Heever – Roshei Ken CT (Hanhaggah Members)
  • Tia Unterslak and Kayla Bagg – Roshei Bogrim CT (Hanhaggah Members)
  • Jordan Harris – Rosh Nesher Shorashim Israel Experience (Hanhaggah Member)
  • Adam Edelstein – Rosh April Seminar (Hanhaggah Member)
  • Caleb Lester – Rosh Publications
  • Joseph Marcus – Rosh Israel Leadership Tour
  • Ashley Fischhoff – Rosh South African Leadership Tour (Hanhaggah Member)
  • Yossi Bank – Hanhaggah Member Without Portfolio
  • Nina Reitenberg – Hanhaggah Member Without Portfolio
  • Shai Aarons – Hanhaggah Member Without Portfolio
  • Josef Avinir – Hanhaggah Member Without Portfolio
  • Adam Koor – Hanhaggah Member Without Portfolio
  • Aston Silver – Hanhaggah Member Without Portfolio
  • Oren Blass – Hanhaggah Member Without Portfolio

Machaneh17 Na’aleh

December of 2017 saw over 700 chaverim come together on our gorgeous campsite in Onrus, Hermanus for what was one of the best machanot HDSA has seen in years. The weather was perfect throughout the three weeks, channichim and madrichim alike had smiles on their faces every single day and everyone went home on the 27th December with plenty of new life long friendships, having felt educationally engaged and with Habonim in their hearts.

We want to take this opportunity to thank some key people whom without, Machaneh17 Na’aleh could not have been so successful. To the

Va’ad Poel – David Schwartz, Jess Levitt, Talia Anstey, Dean Goldin and Aaron Fainman. To the Va’ad Machaneh – Jess Weisz, Paris Pencharz, Amber Gordon, Nina Reitenberg, Alon Mizrahi, Tia Unterslak, Zac Fleishman, Ashley Fischhoff, Daniel Kartun, Daniel Sussman, Zena Kruss van der Heever, ErinGordon, Aston Silver, Ryan Kopping, Zach Nudelman, Jessie

Froman, Eden Plein, Caleb Lester and Kyle Davkin. To Errol Anstey, Melissa Bennun, Olga Mizrahi and Susan Abraham – our all year round and support, the four of you really are the back bone of this movement. To Danny Adeno Abebe and his beautiful family –

we absolutely love and appreciate having you here and look forward to a successful year ahead with you as our partners.

To our doscville staff and CSO – Paul and Mandy Picker, Sharon Rosen, Caroline Serebro, Judy Grant, Grace Rubin, Tanya and Anthony Kaplan, Dr Mark Reiteberg and Ruth Nowosenetz, Garry Allan, Nicole Goldberg, Robyn Berman, Andy Malka, Livnat Katz, Joanne Benjamin and Tzipora Ngwenya, without all of your commitment, hard work and dedication this machaneh would not have been what it was.

Our madrichim and each and every single one of our channichim – Habonim Dror Southern Africa exists to the extent that it does today because of you. Without our involvement, support, engagement, passion and enthusiasm for Jewish Youth, none of this would be possible. So thank you for taking an interest and thank you for being a part of this beautiful youth movement.




The dates for Machaneh 2018 will be from the 9th-28th December. Keep your eyes open for more information over the next few months. Should you have any further enquiries please email

Ken Updates

Cape Town

As January comes to an end the Cape Town Ken is reflecting on it with smiles and pride. Over the last week the Ken ran a successful Kinnus voting, where we reintroduced Mazkirut (heads of each age group for Cape Town) for the first time in some years. It was clear that there is a new energy of commitment and responsibility in the Ken with every position having at least two people running. Mazal Tov to all those who were voted in and have chosen to take on this commendable task.

Just 24 hours after the voting the Ken ran one of the most successful opening events in the last few years. Our tapas and mocktail party was a huge hit with the Ken and over 60 people attended, a remarkable feat as far as Cape Town events go. This opening event also marked the first time that Givon (grade 11) were introduced to the Bogrim body and their positive and excited energy was felt by all; we cannot wait to see what they have in store for us.

The Ken VP (steering committee) have also just come off a seminar to plan the year and have many exciting and new events planned which they can’t wait to share with the Ken. The CT Ken VP consists of Gabi Saven, Zena Kruss van der Heever, Kayla Bagg and Tia Unterslak.


The Joburg ken has started off with a bang! The Ken VP (who are the people in charge of Habo Joburg for the year) are so excited for what’s to come!

With our opening event hosting over 175 channichim and Bogrim having a blast, we cannot begin to imagine what the road ahead looks like, we already have some events lined up! Such as the Shnat farewell, FNM’s, Hannagah dinner and Mini Machanot! Stay tuned for what’s to come because trust us we have loads of cool, engaging and fun activities planned for this year!

The Ken VP is made up of 5 people, there are two Roshei Ken (Erin Gordon and Eden Plein), two Roshei bogrim (Amber Gordon and Bradley Mervis) and lastly our Shaliach Adeno Abebe.

From The Desk of Our Shaliach: Danny Adeno Abebe

This year will be a challenging year. As a shaliach , my main job is to try to help with all the issues. The goal I have set for myself as a shaliach is to bring the values ​​of Habonim to the Jewish community and to erase old stigmas. I spend Shabbat and holidays in the shuls, where I have gotten to know this amazing community very well.

I believe that shuls are a place where many important things happen in the community. Shuls are like a parliament, where you can hear everything, make connections and hear other things. I feel that we are a good movement in this community. There is a good atmosphere in the community towards us and everyone talks about the successful Machaneh that we had this past December.

I am starting the “Habonim ulpan” in which we will all learn spoken Hebrew – these are happening every Monday night from 19:30-21:00 at the Johannesburg Bayit and is open to Shomrim and up. Once a week I am in the schools as the shaliach of Habonim (KDVP and KDL).

In the framework of the basic values ​​of the Habonim movement I am now running a project called “Your Neighbors”. This project aims to help those who struggle in classes – study mathematics, history for the children of Soweto. I am doing this as the Shaliach of Habonim Dror Southern Africa and the Shaliach of WZO, under the guise of the values of HDSA. I’d love to have you all join me in this project which begins on February 11 and it will happen one Sunday each month.

Shnat 2018

On the 7th Of February we will have our 11 Shnatties head of to spend the next 10 months in Israel. We’re incredibly excited by the size of the group and cannot wait to see how they thrive on the program. Our shnatties are Jonathan Sidi, Caylee Knopfmacher, Gina-Lee Ellis, Daniella Steiner, Hannah Fleishman, Jesse Lees, Aviva Phillips, Aaron Benjamin, Avram Seeligsohn and Joy Saacks. The 11 of them will be lead by David Schwartz who recently made Aliyah to join Garin Mafteach.

The Shnatties will spend the first three and a half months in Jersualem on Machon where they will interact with other Shnat participants from youth movements around the world. They will engage with different aspects of Zionism, Israeli society, the story of the Jewish people, intensive hadracha (leadership) training and other areas of general interest. They will then be living in Tel Aviv where they will be working within Israeli Society with our sister youth movement, learning how to run kenim as well as with other various organizations. The shnatties will also spend about a month on Kibbutz Yizreel and get the real Kibbutznik experience by waking up super early each day, working in the almond fields, taking responsibility over the cheder ochal and so on. It’s an incredibly exciting time for our shnatties and we cannot wait to hear about it as the year goes by.

Upcoming Events


Givon and Shavit April Seminar – 3rd-8th April

Eyal (Grade 9) Seminar – Dates TBC

Nesher Shorashim Israel Experience – 28th June – 16th July

Machaneh 2018 – 9th – 28th December

Cape Town:

Shnat Farewell – 7th February

Mini Mach 1 – 16th -18th March, the Habonim Campsite.


Shnat Farewell – 31st January, at the Bayit 6pm.

Hanhaggah Dinner and Shabbat Service (Shomrim and Bogrim only) – 2nd February, at the Bayit 5pm.

Mini Mach 1 – 16th– 18th March, Camp Zenith, Magaliesberg.

For further enquiries on any upcoming events, suggestions, feedback etc please get in contact with either Jess Levitt ( or if it’s Ken Specific you can email Eden Plein and Erin Gordon ( or Gabi Saven and Zena Kruss van der Heever (  or feel free to call our offices, Cape Town (021 464 6763) and Johannesburg (011 786 7046).

Aleh Ve’Hagshem, Rise Up and Fulfil

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