February 4, 2009
Saving the World with the Blue Box
The small tin box is
making a grand
JNF's Blue Box,
which in the past
collected donations to
redeem the Land of
Israel, is returning to
time, the aim is not to
raise funds but a
activity to enhance
ecology, nature and
love of the Land of
"The Blue Box –
and approved by
the Ministry of
week in Haviv
ecological issues and goals, stressing partnership, environmental responsibility and the participation of
school students in their immediate surroundings and countrywide. The educational kit
includes a colored poster, KKL-JNF coins, stickers and multiple activities tickets, a
Blue Box, a CD with a song about the Blue Box and an instructional booklet for
teachers in schools and kindergartens.
"It was no
we decided to start
especially in this
Stenzler, at a
at the school. "This
was the first
Hebrew school in
Israel and in the
world, where all
taught in Hebrew.
Benjamin Zee'ev (Theodor) Herzl visited here. Israel's visionary founder always had a Blue Box on his
table and today we are all continuing in his footsteps."
Also present were
the Minister of
Tamir and senior
the Mayor of
Rishon LeZion Dov
Tzur and excited
first grade pupils.
"The world is
developing and lots
of trees are
must preserve the
trees and save the
world. Children are
the generation of the future and we shall lead this process, said Yarden of Grade 6. Her class mate Ettie said that "the time has come to restore the Blue Box, as it was
Stenzler added that "the Blue Box actually built up the State of Israel. Everybody gave
a cent and with this money the land of Israel was bought, dunam after dunam. For 108
years the Blue Box has symbolized the bond between the Jewish People and the land
of Israel. Together we are reviving the values of environmental quality and solidarity
with the land of Israel and mankind. The box symbolizes the yearnings for the days
when the Jewish People were united in common purpose."
Rishon LeZion Mayor Dov Tzur, himself a
graduate of Haviv school, said at the ceremony that
"many years ago when I was a pupil here, we also
had a Blue Box to redeem the land of Israel. Our
task now is to preserve our country and make it
more beautiful and greener."
Education Minister Professor Yuli
Tamir said "Nostalgia is important, but
renewal is more important. KKL-JNF has
learnt how to combine the two. We have
moved from donations to deeds, aimed at
getting to know and love the place in
which we live. Today we don’t collect
money but our children's good deeds. We
shall set out from this school to cover all
the schools in Israel, making it an
integral part of our educational program."
Turning directly to the young pupils, the minister said, "When you open the Blue Box
you will find games inside which you can play on the computer or in the classroom.
As you play these games, you will know Israel and learn about environmental quality."
Yossi Wasserman, Secretary-General of the
Teachers' Union, said: "KKL-JNF values are the
values of the Jewish People in Israel. It is our
duty not only to impart knowledge, but to teach
and transmit to our younger generation the
values of love for mankind and love for our
homeland. We were all raised on the Blue Box,
and this is our opportunity to transmit these
values to the next generation."
In the artistic part of the ceremony, the pupils
demonstrated their aptitudes in song and dance."
"Preserving the environment is not just a slogan,
and everyone can influence," the children recited
from the stage. After they began singing Israeli
songs, even the esteemed guests in the first row
could not resist and joined in with them, singing
and clapping: "Rise up and wander through the land of Israel with your backpack and
your cane, and you will surely meet Eretz Yisrael on the way," they sang all together.
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