My name is Malka Leviton and I went to Harova in 2016/2017. I grew up in Germany in an observant family, and attended secular German schools until I graduated from high school. Besides Sunday school at Chabad and a religious studies class that took place once a week in the community, my knowledge about Halacha, Tanach and overall Judaism came from my incredibly knowledgeable mother.
I was the only observant person my age in the community at the time, and also the only one to take a year off after high school to fully dedicate myself to learning Torah and being immersed in Jewish living around like-minded individuals.
Harova turned out to be much more than that. The teachers at Harova pointed out the life in Tanach and the more I learned, the more I saw how prophecies have played out or are currently unfolding here in Israel. Traveling around Israel became an opportunity for inspiration when I opened myself up to it. Besides the learning, my year in Harova was also filled with friendship, laughter, singing, meaningful moments, and people that would end up becoming like family for me. After Harova, I made Aliyah, learned Hebrew in the Hebrew University Mechina and went on to pursue a degree in psychology and criminology at Hebrew University. I got married in the height of Covid-19 in a small wedding surrounded by my Harova family and am now working in the mental health field.