An Article published in the National Aharai! publication, written by Roy, a Kfar-Saba participant in the program
Currently Roy is volunteering for one year in Jerusalem, prior to serving in the Military. Last year the Kfar Saba – Columbus Partnership awarded Roy with the excellence prize named after Ilan Jarus, the former Partnership chairman.
Roy writes, under the title “I Am Israel!”:
It seems that this story has no beginning or end. Everything is so simple. There is not much to expect, certainly not from an average child like me, trying to tell briefly about his life, and putting it all together.
There is no deep meaning in what I write, nor in my intention. Everything in my case is happening by chance, and I am lucky. The truth is that I am thankful to be where I am.
It all started less than three years ago. I began losing direction, drifting in the street with the guys, looking for adventures. I was not thinking about the consequences of everything I was doing. I was quite naïve, like Marko in the “Heart” story, looking for his mother. At one point I lost my innocence. I did not ask for pity. I was walking in the streets, banging my head into the wall. Whenever I encountered a difficulty, I gave up easily, and ran into a world of anger and loneliness. I did not care about anything. Just to try and pass one more day without freaking out. The path I left behind was steep and dark and I wish never to return to it. Even if I left something on the way – let it remain there. It is not worthwhile to make an effort to retrieve it. I even did not know the meaning of words such as “motivation” or “investment”. I knew only carelessness. Just walking and when I was entering a place – it was until the end, even if it was a dark and frightening tunnel.
Alter totally losing direction, somehow a miracle happened. I saw some light at the end of the tunnel when I joined Aharai! Something changed in me. Every time I ran till exhaustion I knew I won. I knew I did my 101 percent. To arrive and break myself all over again did me good. Slowly, with my rehabilitation, I understood I do not have limits as I did, and I know, like people who came from such places that dreams are a sort of a legend.
There is hardly any hope in neighborhood alleys. Everyone is paving his own unstable and unsafe path, a real highway to hell. I succeeded to realize the difference between those things, and I was lucky. I did not wish to conduct the rest of my life that way. I managed to get out safe.
Many are still looking for their break, but are afraid of losing everything they managed to obtain. We will not have any other option.
Finally we will have to lead ourselves to the unknown, trying to secure a better future for us and for those who surround us.
Aharai changed a perception in me, that for most youth is nearly impossible. One point connected me with all the lost points, like a row of stars and new dreams. I believe that everyone who is still dreaming, but is just standing and looking at the sky, has to know when to put his feet firm on the ground. Without just floating about, without losing senses due to mistakes made on the way. We are all made from the same material. At the end we will all break, disappear. The question is who will do the best he can, and who will live to fulfill his dreams.
I hope everyone will understand it one day in his own way.