7:30 AM – Z’man Ruchani (Spiritual Practice)
Start the day with a spiritual practice. Examples include yoga, Jewish guided meditation, early morning nature hikes, Tallit-making workshops, and traditional prayer services. The options change depending on the interests of participants, and there are always several options to choose from.
8:15 AM – Flag Raising / Avodat Halev (Service of the Heart)
This daily ritual is a start to our day as a community.
8:45 AM – Breakfast
Join in a meal prepared by the BCI kitchen.
9:30 AM – Avodah (Community Service)
Avodah (literally meaning “work”) projects emphasize the Jewish value of service and the kibbutz ideal of working the land together as a community. Avodah is one of the ways BCIers can give back through various projects and work that help develop the land and support the community. Some typical Avodah projects include tending to our aquaponics garden, caring for the animals in the pasture, or working on construction projects and greening projects.
10:45 AM – Break
An opportunity to rest, hang out, or hike in the beautiful natural surroundings.
11:15 AM – Beit Midrash
A place for participants to immerse themselves in Jewish experiences, texts, and wisdom and reflect on the significance of Jewish values and community in their lives. Jewish learning at BCI is joyous, cultivates questions, and addresses important and relevant themes. Examples of Jewish themes explored at BCI include God, spirituality, ecology, social justice, ethics, prayer, Jewish history, theology, and philosophy.
1:00 PM – Lunch
Lunch generally ends at 1:45.
1:45 PM – Break
An afternoon break to rest and recharge.
2:30 PM – Art Workshops
Let our artists-in-residence guide you through a creative process designed to help you find and develop your artistic voice. Workshop options in previous summers have included music, theater, dance, photography, visual arts, and creative writing. We encourage you to create an original project to present to the BCI community at the end of the summer.
4:00 PM – Free Time
Rest. Swim. Hike. Play basketball. Play volleyball. Learn to read Hebrew. Climb the adventure course. Take an optional class. Or just hang out! It’s up to you.
6:15 PM – Flag Lowering / Avodat Halev
Avodat Halev or “service of theheart” is a session of mindfulness and to close out our day. Engage in guided meditation, prayer, and reflection.
6:45 PM – Dinner
Dinner follows the Avodat Halev program and generally begins at 6:45 pm.
7:40 PM – Rikud (Israeli Dance) / Shira (Singing)
You may come to BCI knowing no Hebrew and with two left feet, but you’ll leave humming Hebrew standards and dancing to classic and modern Israeli choreography.
8:30 PM – Evening Program
Hear from a guest scholar, artist, or performer. Hang by the campfire, have a small-group discussion, camp out overnight, or enjoy a social event with the BCI community.
“Yes! I had the chance to be myself without any filter: Zionist and pro-Palestinian, queer, and Jewish. I’d never felt so accepted in my life and that’s thanks to all the amazing staff.”
Noy, 28, Tel Aviv, Israel
“I feel more like myself here than I have in a long time. My confidence has grown. It has been so amazing to feel 110% supported by the staff and other participants and it has allowed me to step out of my comfort zone in a supported way.”
Emma, 25, Ann Arbor, Michigan
“I learned that my identity as a nonbinary individual does not clash with my identity as a Jew. Rather, the two complement each other and integrate with each other in such profound ways. I am very proud of myself for overcoming my challenges of stepping out of my comfort zone and reconnecting with my faith, both of which I feel I accomplished this summer at BCI.”