July 16, 2020
Avraham Kahan, Teaneck NJ, Yeshivat Otniel
After the Coronavirus locked us all into our homes, I wanted to do something of value with my time. I decided to try to find a volunteer opportunity and found Kedma’s Homework Helpers Club to help Israeli students from disadvantaged homes with homework during the epidemic. Through Kedma, I was matched with א, a student from central Israel.
At first, I was a little worried. א was true Israeli, through and through, and I was concerned my Hebrew wouldn’t be up to par. Also, I also had never tutored an Israeli before, and my knowledge of the Israeli curriculum was limited to my Yeshiva friends complaining about bagruyot. My fears were quickly assuaged, as א and I hit it off immediately. We got some work done, and had some fun, as I taught him a few math/computer tricks and he introduced me to a plethora of life hacks, including turning your shirt into a kafiya, the best way to raid a room with a nerf gun, and other essential skills in which I was sadly lacking.
My experience with א taught me that our cultural differences were much smaller than all that we shared. Getting to know him has been both meaningful and fun, and I hope our friendship will continue well into the future.