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Alumni Spotlight - Maayan, Sarah, and Alysse of Workshop 58 (58!)

Updated: Apr 25, 2019

Sarah, Maayan, and Alysse all started at Gilboa in the early 2000s and were a part of Workshop 58 (58!) Bogrim summer, in 2005, was the first summer all three of us were at camp together. We began our friendship by being evacuated on the first day of machaneh and bonding over Red Cross burritos and sleeping at Yucaipa high school. This was followed by many amazing summers at Gilboa and Machaneh Miriam in Vancouver. Since then our long distance friendship has evolved into San Diego chofshim, auntie-hood, and virtual check ins.

From left: Sarah, Maayan, Adi, and Jonny in San Diego


After my last summer as a madricha at Gilboa in 2011, I moved to England, where I worked for HDUK and roshed machaneh. In the summer of 2015, I married Jonny Davies, a silly Mancunian, who I met on Workshop 58 (58!), and we started our life in sunny San Diego soon after. After completing my degree in Human Development at UCSD, we welcomed our beautiful and spunky daughter, Adi Davies who takes up most of my days - and patience. Watching her grow (so fast!) and discover the world has been one of the coolest experience (besides working at Gilboa of course!). We love sprinkling little bits of Gilboa into our lives, whether it be through our shabbatot, experiential learning, and family shira. I’ve worked with children of varying abilities in multiple contexts throughout my post high school years. When I’m not with my little mishpachah, I can be found working a couple afternoons a week at a preschool, at my favorite cafe, or sleeping (let’s be real, Adi is remarkable... and an early riser).

From left: Sarah, Adi, and Maayan


I first came to Gilboa in 2001 in Amelim and worked on tzevet from 2008 to 2014. I was Rosh in 2013 and came back the following year to help create the new Melavah tafkid (Director of Camper Wellbeing.) Since leaving machaneh, I worked in schools in Oakland providing special education support and running a literacy intervention program. Now I’m living in Oregon (Go Ducks!) getting my masters degree in School Psychology. Once I graduate I plan to support school systems and students needing extra support and special education. I credit a lot of my passion for education, social justice, and greasy grilled cheeses to my years working in Habonim. Besides studying, I spend my time supporting Gilboa as board treasurer, trying to be outdoorsy in the pacific northwest, and crashing on Ma’ayan’s couch so I can hang with Adi.

From left: Adi, Alysse, and Maayan


Like Sarah, I did a short stint at Gilboa in 2000 before coming back in 2003 for my first full summer. I remember distinctly the first day of machaneh in 2003 - meeting Maayan, seeing my tzrif with just two walls, and admiring my madrichol’s armpit hair. Let’s just say it was true love! When Sarah re-joined our kvutzah in 2005 it set the stage for lifelong friendship. I often say that Habonim Dror taught me everything I know. After college I moved to New Orleans to participate in Avodah, a Jewish service corps. Happy to say I still live in New Orleans, where I worked as a union organizer and then became the Program Director at Avodah - essentially a hybrid job of chinuch and madrichol. While I have to take a flight to visit Ma’ayan (and Jonny!) and Sarah and other Habos, I’m so lucky to maintain magical relationships with my machaneh family.


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