If you can’t find the information you are looking for on our website or by looking through our FAQs for general information, you can contact us with your specific questions. Please review the FAQs before reaching out to us!
By phone: 212-879-9305 ext. 245
By email: firstname.lastname@example.org
You are responsible for raising a minimum of $950 towards your trip's Blueprint Negev Campaign. Once you reach your fundraising minimum, JNF is committed to sponsoring your trip to Israel. This includes your flights to and from Israel from the US, housing, most meals, and transportation while abroad. It also includes medical insurance while you are with the group. Without 5 donors, the cost of fundraising increases to $2,500, so make sure to ask lots of your friends and family! Although JNF covers almost everything, it does NOT provide money for souvenirs, snacks, and independent meals. (You are responsible for your own domestic transportation within the U.S.)
We do not offer scholarships for Alternative Winter Break since an important component of this experience is fundraising and learning about philanthropy. We are happy to assist you in finding ways to reach your goal. You can access a list of helpful fundraising tips here.
There are 40 spots on each trip and space is available on a first come, first serve basis. To confirm your participation you must register on our website and then CONFIRM your participation by completing our Fundraising Guarantee Form (FRG). After that, fill out your Travel Accommodations Form so we can book your ticket. Once you have completed these first three steps you will guarantee your space on the trip. Then you will have until two weeks before the trip leaves to complete your fundraising. Please contact email@example.com for further questions.
Once you've registered for Alternative Break to Israel, you can use Facebook, Twitter or other social media to invite your friends to support you. Use these sample messages to post regular updates as you make progress toward your fundraising goal and to publicly thank your supporters
Many contributions can be doubled if your company has a Matching Gifts Program. Fill out your company’s paperwork for matching gifts and this form and submit the forms to:
Education - Alternative Break Team
Jewish National Fund
42 East 69th Street
New York, NY 10021
Checks should be made payable to Jewish National Fund. Download our offline donation form and send to:
Education - Alternative Break Team
Jewish National Fund Headquarters
42 East 69th Street
New York, NY 10021
It's never safe to mail cash. Have cash donors transfer the cash into a cashier's check or personal check.
Yes! Feel free to use the logos in promotional materials but please do not alter the logos in any way.
Alternative Break trips are filled on a first-come first-serve basis depending on fundraising completion by participants. To confirm your participation you must register on our website (step 1) and then CONFIRM your participation by completing our Fundraising Guarantee Form (FRG) (step 2). Once you have completed BOTH of these steps you will guarantee your space on the trip. Then you will have until two weeks before the trip leaves to complete your fundraising. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further questions
The money you are raising goes directly to JNF projects, in Israel; therefore, we cannot refund any money that is donated. We strongly recommend that you explain to your donors that their donations are going to Blueprint Negev or Go North and that because of their donations, JNF is sponsoring your trip to Israel. Your donors will receive a tax receipt for their donation to Israel through JNF. If you find that you are unable to go (even though you have raised some or all of the money) contact us, and we will discuss your options with you.
When you register online for Alternative Break to Israel, you automatically get your very own Participant Center. Your Participant Center is designed to make online fundraising easy. Update your personal page with your story and photo, and then send emails to your contacts asking them to visit your page and make a contribution. It also allows you to track your fundraising progress and donation history to make sure you reach your goal.
You can spread the word wherever you connect to your family and friends. In addition to online tools found in your Participant Center, visit our fundraising tips page for more tools to make fundraising fun and easy.
To retrieve your password, log in here, scroll down to the "Forgot Password?" section, and enter the username you created when you registered or that was provided to you. Your password will be emailed to you. If you have forgotten your username, scroll down to the "Email me my Username" section and enter the email address you registered with.
Please contact our Education department at email@example.com or call us at 212-879-9305, ext. 245.
On the home page of the website, friends and family can locate an event by clicking on the "Search" or "Donate" buttons. By typing in the name of the participant, they will be directed to the person's participant center where they may make a donation, and view current funds raised. You may also invite friends and family to make an online contribution to your event by selecting "Send an email" while logged into your participant center. This email includes a template message, containing the link where donors may go to contribute online.
Every online donation will receive an automated email acknowledgment that can be used for tax purposes. It is also a good idea to send your own personal thank-you to anyone who responds to your request for support (a template can be found in your Participation Center).
Going early is usually not an option. As we purchase our tickets as a group you are required to travel to Israel with us.The only exception to this is if you are studying in Israel already. You will still be required to raise the minimum of $950 in order to go on Alternative Break. You will be required to meet us at the airport and stay with the group for the entirety of the trip.
You may request to extend your airline ticket, but airline restrictions for groups only allow us to extend a limited amount of tickets. There will be an additional cost to extend your trip. Extensions are first-come, first-serve and will not be submitted until the fundraising minimum has been met or you have submitted your Fundraising Guarantee Form (FRG). Once you are confirmed, you can request your extension by completing Step 3: Your Travel Accommodations form. We will then submit your request to the travel agent and he/she will be in touch with you about your options for an extension. If extending your trip is important to you, your FRG must be completed well before the deadline .
Even if you are not able to extend through us, you may try to extend through the airline. You will only be able to do this once you are already in Israel, and there are no guarantees that you will get the dates or times you want. JNF is not involved in extensions granted through the airline upon arrival in Israel.
Please see Trip Information.
Our trips depart from either from JFK in New York or Logan airport in Boston. You are responsible for getting yourself to the departure city airport four hours prior to departure (or immediately after Shabbat ends if you are Shabbat-observant) in order to check in and make your flight to Israel. We do not book or pay for domestic flights, and we recommend that you get to your departure location well in advance of your scheduled flight to Israel, due to unforeseen airline or airport problems. If booking domestic flights, plan to arrive at the airport five hours prior to our Israel departure.
Each day is broken up into sections. Every day is unique. Each day the group heads to a different work site. Generally, participants all volunteer as a group in the morning, take a lunch break, and then continue working in the afternoon. Depending on the day, there may be hikes, tours, or other activities interspersed throughout your time in Israel. Alternative Break focuses on building up the Negev or Northern region of Israel. Our work projects are designed so that any able-bodied person can participate in our program.
You can view a sample itinerary here from a previous year. Please keep in mind that this is NOT the itinerary for this year's trip. Itineraries for this year will be sent out to participants closer to the trip date.
The types of programming may include, but are not limited to: planting, pruning, building, painting, gardening, harvesting, and working with children. View our sample work projects. A complete itinerary will be available for you closer to your trip date.
Yes. We want your Alternative Break experience to be fun and rewarding, which means that we balance hard work with fun activities and some relaxation time. You can access a sample itinerary to see how we have done this in the past.
There will be some free time on the trip. However, you are making a commitment to participate in a peer group experience for the duration of the program beginning with your flight to Israel. You are required to stay with the group at all times. Although there will be no free days on this program, there will be certain time blocks in which your friends and family members will be able to visit with you. Your trip leader will give you specifics about when and where as soon as your itinerary has been finalized. If you have any questions about this policy, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
To sign up with a group, follow our registration process for teams. If your team has yet to be created, you can start your own by becoming a team leader. If you want to find or join a team that has already been created, you can search by team name. If you are unsure of the team name, you can search for a team by the name of the team captain. If you and others have joined individually but want to join a team, contact us and we will help you.
While you are welcome to fundraise together, each team member will be responsible for his/her own fundraising minimum. Every person has a personal webpage, and people will be allowed to donate to individuals, not necessarily or to the team as a whole. Funds raised as a team will be distributed amongst team members after contacting email@example.com.
To participate in Alternative Break, you must be a Jewish young adult, post-high school, between the ages of 18 and 24. Participants must raise at least $950 for the Blueprint Negev Campaign or Go North Campaign. While it is not required that you have been to Israel before, we strongly recommend it, as this is not a touring trip. This is a volunteer based trip, and as such you must be willing and able to fully participate in all of our work projects in order to join us.
We can only take those individuals who have United States or Canadian passports. Canadians must be studying or working in the US. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
Jewish National Fund's Alternative Break program is for Jewish young adults ages 18 to 24 who are post high school. Eligible individuals are those recognized as Jewish by the Jewish community or by one of the recognized denominations of Judaism; or if either parent is Jewish or the applicant does not actively practice another religion. If you are not Jewish and you are a leader on your college campus you may explore our Caravan For Democracy Leadership Mission.
The age range is 18-24. We do not take students who are still in high school, even if they are already 18, but you do not have to be in college in order to attend. The full spectrum of ages is represented on each trip. We do everything we can in order to ensure that you are comfortable with the people in your group. Each of our buses is a mix of individuals of all ages. If you want to travel solely with young professionals OR are 25-35 years of age please sign up to join the JNFuture Volunteer Vacation.
You will be able to request to be on a bus with your traveling partner(s). This means that you will be in a work group, be able to dine, and spend free time together. We pick rooming assignments for the majority of the trip, unless you are married and request to room with your spouse. Unmarried couples will not be allowed to room together.
Each bus has approximately 40 people per bus. We will have 3 different options to travel over winter break.
Absolutely. We can credit you for up to 25 volunteer hours for your time in Israel. We can either fill out your school's provided form or write a letter outlining volunteer activities.
Absolutely! In fact, we encourage it. Alternative Break is not intended as an introduction to Israel. While you may join us even if you have not previously been to Israel, you need to be aware that this is not a typical touring trip. This allows for us to concentrate our efforts on one region in Israel and make the most of our volunteer time there.
If you have never been to Israel we strongly suggest that you do Taglit-Birthright Israel:Shorashim-JNF Israel Adventure Trip prior to Alternative Break so that you can take advantage of your FREE 10-day tour of Israel. Alternative Break is a one-week community service trip where you volunteer in Israel. Since Alternative Break is only 6 nights in Israel it will not make you ineligible for Taglit-Birthright Israel.
We operate under extensive safety precautions and have developed a program that is as safe, secure, meaningful, and fun as possible. Click here to access our complete safety regulation information sheet.
Registration opens mid-summer. Follow us on Facebook to find out when we go live and for other updates and giveaways!
Neither Jewish National Fund nor our Alternative Break program is affiliated with any specific denomination of Judaism. We have had Jewish young adults from very religious to secular on our trips; we do not force any religious views or programs upon our participants at any time. We ask that our participants respect each other and not force their views on other participants during our time together. All provided meals are certified Kosher by the local Rabbinate.
All young Jewish adults, between the ages of 18 and 24 are welcome to participate in Alternative Break regardless of your level of religious observance. As a group we respect the day of rest and do not work or travel on Shabbat. We try our best to provide a number of options for religious services within walking distance that participants can choose to attend. We eat all our Shabbat meals together, hold an Oneg Shabbat on Friday night, and a group discussion and reflection during the day on Saturday. There will be considerable free time for participants who want to sleep or hang out with the friends you have made from your group. Later on Friday night or Saturday afternoon after lunch is an ideal time to have friends or family come to the hotel to visit with you.
Yes. We need you to register for this year’s program, as it is different from last year’s. However, if you registered and fundraised last year but did not join us, please contact us about crediting your funds to this year’s program.
Register online here! Form a team, join a team or register as an individual.
There is no registration fee to participate in Alternative Break to Israel but each participant must raise $950 to support Jewish National Fund's projects, BluePrint Negev or Go North Campaigns. JNF's Blueprint Negev campaign supports Israel's newest generation of pioneers in developing, inhabiting and preserving the Negev Desert. Trips that travel to the North of Israel will support Go North Campaign to help to build the infrastructure of the north of Israel to make it home for more of Israel's residents.
Once you meet your fundraising goal, the program is FREE. The actual cost of the program is covered by other JNF donors. Participants are responsible for round-trip transportation to New York or Los Angeles from their home communities.
The minimum fundraising requirement for Alternative Break to Israel is $950. Each participant must have a minimum of 5 donations. If you choose not to utilize our fundraising system, or have less than 5 donations then you can participate on the trip by paying $2500, the actual cost of the trip. However, we are counting on your help to raise funds and connect more people to JNF. Once registered, you'll have access to all the tools and tips you'll need to make fundraising easy!
If you do not have medical insurance that covers you in Europe & Israel or you would like additional insurance for lost baggage or flight delay, we recommend Travel Guard. The ProtectAssist (Gold) Plan is inexpensive - about $60 in most cases - and provides the most appropriate coverage. To purchase or get a quote, click the Travel Guard link above. You should indicate $250 (this is the non-refundable portion) as the cost of the program, and enter today's date as the deposit date.
Once you have reached your fundraising goal or completed the Fundraising Guarantee Form (FRG) you are confirmed for the trip and we will be purchasing your airline ticket. In the unfortunate event that you need to cancel your participation, the following cancellation fees will apply:
For Winter Break Trips:
Cancellation by October 16: $250
Cancellation between October 16 - October 30: $500
Cancellation after October 30: $2,500 (the full cost of the trip)
Donations made to your page are donations to JNF and cannot be returned, even if you cancel your participation.
All cancellation fees will be charged to the credit card number provided on the Fundraising Guarantee Form (FRG) unless you make alternative arrangements.
Visit our About JNF page.