SOS International is an educational travel experience initiated by Rabbi Joel and Aviva Tessler from Potomac, Maryland. Its goal is to provide Jewish adults and high school teenagers with the opportunity of doing chesed (acts of kindness) activities in order to assist and strengthen Jewish communities in the Diaspora and in Israel.
In 2011, SOS International will be taking adults and teenagers to Jewish communities in Spain, Morocco, Gibraltar, Greece and Israel. Some of the chesed activities that SOS organizes in Jewish communities include: cleaning cemeteries, visiting the elderly, painting schools, preparing meals in soup kitchens, packing food for hundreds of needy families, working with youth, assisting Ethiopian immigrants, comforting terror victims in Israel, distributing care packages to Israeli soldiers and so much more.
Through SOS International participants will experience a program that is balanced with chesed, Torah learning, Jewish history and fun. SOS International participants in past years have shared that these programs have helped them deepen their love and commitment to Judaism and at the same time have increased their self confidence necessary to make a difference. These programs give life to the Talmudic words in tractate Sanhedrin 37a that states: “to sustain the life of one Jewish soul, is as if, you have sustained the entire world.”