About the Program

Each year, Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest NJ, in partnership with the Jewish Agency for Israel, welcomes a group of young emissaries from communities in Israel. Rishonim are talented young adults who are embarking on a gap year between high school graduation and their mandatory IDF or national service. They volunteer throughout our community in schools, synagogues, and JCCs, bringing their spirit, knowledge, and love of Israel to our community. 


1. Strengthen students’ knowledge of Israel as a vibrant modern country. 

2. Deepen students’ understanding of Israel’s history, land, people, culture, and the country’s relationship to Judaism.

3. Motivate and excite students to visit Israel.

Our 2019/2020 Rishon: Hadar Burstein

Hadar is an 18-year-old from Ramat Gan with two older brothers and an older sister.  In school she majored in Physics with a concentration in Bible and Jewish Philosophy.  At age 10 she joined the religious youth movement, B’nei Akiva and later served as a counselor. In her free time, she enjoys, cooking, traveling and hanging out with friends.

Hadar joins our religious school each Tuesday afternoon, working with our 3rd-7th grade classes.