Students in Washington for Panim
By Sydney Novetsky
Five other seniors and ten juniors, had the privilege of going to Washington D.C. with Ms. Sennett from Sunday morning until Tuesday night. We were joined with Jewish teens from around the country to attend a Panim el Panim seminar, a teen leadership and advocacy program.
We spent all of Sunday learning from experts on topics such as Israel, the Democratic Republic of Congo and homelessness. We ended the day with “Street Torah,” engaging homeless people in conversation to provide them with both dignity and winter apparel.
On Monday we attended seminars about healthcare and gun control laws. We ended our day with an undescribable experience at the Anti-Defamation League’s Concert Against Hate at The Kennedy Center, leaving students with inspiration and tears.
On Tuesday we began with seminars to enhance our skills in leadership, advocacy and civic engagment. Using the skills we learned, we were honored to end the trip by lobbying the staff of Senator Kirk and Congresswoman Schakowsky, voicing our opinions and passions. This was an experience that has taught me countless lessons, information and techniques that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.