Tal Grunspan is the founder and chair of Limmud TLV, the Tel-Avivian community which is part of the Limmud International network of communities around the world.
As part of my ongoing journey to explore different Limmud events and communities around the globe, thanks to the ROI Micro Grant I was able, for the first time in my life, to cross the equator and explore a bit of the southern part of the planet. South Africa has been an extraordinary adventure. My main goal was to experience Limmud in SA, to learn from what they’ve been doing, hopefully take that knowledge and experience back home with me to Limmud TLV, and maybe also establish Limmud IL (Israel) one day.
Limmud SA has three events in different cities, and all of them are organized by the local community of volunteers. Alongside the local organizations, they have a national team working to coordinate things like the dates of conferences, the international presenters and marketing. The idea is that when working together, they can improve their financial ability to bring international presenters and more, which of course can improve marketing abilities, etc.
We started the journey in Cape Town. When I say we, I mean the amazing group of international presenters Limmud SA chose to bring in 2014. Among this group were people such as Clive Lawton, one of the original founders of Limmud; Gidi Grinstein from the Reut Institute; Yaffa Epstein; and more great people who made our international presenter team such a pleasure, and also a great networking opportunity. I had many talks about the history of Limmuds around the world, and already booked a few presenters to come to Limmud TLV.
So, Limmud Cape Town was great and the city itself was amazing. I was giving a yoga class and sessions about Israeli politics and the Tent Protest in Israel. From Cape Town we continued to Durban for the Limmud conference there, which was also very interesting. After Limmud Durban we went on an organized Safari tour, where we saw many wild animals such as hippos, deer, giraffes, elephants—and on our last day we managed to finally see the lions.
After the Safari we went to our last stop on the tour: the Limmud Johannesburg conference. It was the biggest Limmud of that week, with a big crowd of participants and presenters. It was another new Limmud experience for me, and again a great opportunity to speak and to network.
The Limmud South African tour was most rewarding and enriching—I loved every moment of it!