Written and photographed by Gabi Schiller, Eco 14- semester spring 2015.
What is Hava & Adam? It is much more than a beautiful farm tucked into the hills of Modi’in. It is a place of nature, growth, permaculture, and community. But more specifically, what is the Eco-Israel program that runs on this lovely farm?
A home for a semester. A program that gives you a new family. Being challenged. A learning space.
In eco Israel program we learn Hebrew, cook for each other, have group activities, have permaculture class together, mud-build, learn about herbal medicine, do forest survival workshops, and much more. However, as wonderful as being on the farm is, there is a whole country of breath-taking sights and wonder that is waiting to be explored.
Personally speaking, the Eco-Israel program wouldn’t be complete without seeing what Israel has to offer from things such as bustling markets, to vast desert, to rushing waterfalls, and more. And fortunately, the program has three pre-planned field trips that go to all these various places. There is one trip in the beginning that takes us camping in the beautiful desert of Israel. In the middle, there is a week-long backpacking trip to Jerusalem. Four days of that week are spent hiking, and the last few, are spent exploring the fascinating cobblestone city. Towards the end of the program, there is a trip that goes up North to the Galeel and more.
It is very well thought out considering these planned trips take two opposite ends of the country and gives you a taste of both. However that’s what it is. Just a taste. And it seems almost impossible not to want to continue seeing and discovering more about this incredible land.
That is what weekends are for. From Thursday afternoon to Sunday morning there are seemingly-endless opportunities to venture out into the beauty that lays here. So far, aside from the three trips that are built into the Eco program, I have gone to the mystical city of Tzfat, the Masada mountain, the Dead Sea, stunning waterfalls at Ein Gedi, the quiet and beautiful Golan Heights, and multiple visits to the Judean desert, each time spent in a different part. It has been incredible.
If you are thinking of doing the Eco-Israel program but feel unsure you won’t get enough time to get a feel for the land that everyone seems to want a piece of, I assure you there is time. And plenty of it. Enjoy the pictures from my trips I have taken around Israel!