Meet the Shinshinim

Naama, Or, Yehonatan and Ofer



We are so excited to welcome the seventh cohort of Shinshinim to St. Louis! This cohort includes four eighteen-year-olds from Israel who will be working full-time in our community and teaching about Israel and Israeli culture. Or Garti, from Kfar Tavor, works at Kol Rinah, Temple Israel and the Israeli Scouts; Naama Eldar Herz, from Kibbutz Ramot Menashe in our partnership Region, works at Shaare Emeth and Temple Emanuel; Ofer Ashur, from Meitar, works at United Hebrew and the Israeli Scouts; and Yehonatan Zohar, from our Partnership city Yokneam Ilit, works at Saul Mirowitz Jewish Day school.

Meet Naama Herz: Hi everyone! I am so excited for this coming year! I am from Kibbutz Ramot Menashe, which is in the Partnership Region. In my free time, I love going on walks, being with my family and friends, and working out. I have two younger sisters whom I love so much! I am looking forward to meeting everyone and to be a great Shinshinit in St. Louis!

Meet Or Garti: Hello everyone! I’m Or Garti and I live in a beautiful village in Northern Israel named Kfar Tavor. I have two sisters that I love spending time with. In my free time I enjoy travelling with friends and family, filming and drawing. I am so excited to meet you all!

Meet Ofer Ashur: Shalom St. Louis! My name is Ofer and I live in Southern Israel, in a small town near Beer Sheva. I have a twin sister. In my free time, I really like to play basketball and I also coach a children’s basketball team. I also love being in the Scouts and being a counselor, and also traveling in Israel with friends. I am very excited for this coming year and look forward to meeting you all soon.

Meet Yehonatan Zohar: Hi! I am Yehonatan and I live in Yokneam Illit, which is St. Louis Partnership Region. I am the eldest brother of four, I have two sisters and a brother. I am very passionate about cars and also mountain bikes. I am very excited for this coming year and look forward to meet everyone!


Inbar Bachar, Guy Dobrin, Alma Cohen, and Inbar Bloch


We are so excited to welcome the sixth cohort of Shinshinim to St. Louis!

Meet Inbar Bachar, Inbar Bloch, Alma Cohen, and Guy Dobrin. Inbar Bachar works at United Hebrew Congregation and the Israeli Scouts, Inbar Bloch is at Congregations Shaare Emeth and Temple Emanuel, Alma Cohen works at Saul Mirowitz Jewish Day School, and Guy Dobrin works at Congregations Temple Israel and Kol Rinah as well as the Israeli Scouts. See below for an introduction to each of the Shinshinim:

Meet Inbar Bachar:
Hi everyone! My name is Inbar Bachar and I’m the shinshinit at United Hebrew congregation and the Israeli scouts. I live in Jerusalem with my parents and younger brother. I was part of the scouts youth movement in Israel for 9 years, and also danced in a competitive team. My hobbies are baking, traveling and watching basketball games with my family. So far I’m having the best time here, and can’t wait for more amazing experiences with you guys.

Meet Inbar Bloch:
Hi everyone! My name is Inbar Bloch, and I am the shinshinit at Shaare Emeth, and Temple Emanuel this year. In Israel I live in Tel-Mond, a small town next to Netanya, with my 4 siblings and our parents. In my free time I love singing and being with my friends. In Israel I took part in a youth group named “Krembo wings”; a youth group for kids with and without special needs. Since we have arrived, I have enjoyed every moment here, and met so many amazing people, and I can’t wait to experience more! 

Meet Alma Cohen:
Hi everybody! My name is Alma Cohen, I’m from Kibbutz Ramat Hashofet, located within our partnership area Megido! I have two younger sisters and I love animals! I’m working at Mirowitz Jewish day school and I’m having the best time with the amazing students and staff. I love traveling and baking. I am so happy to be here with this lovely community, I really appreciate your warmth and kindness. I hope to see you all very soon! 

Meet Guy Dobrin:
Hello everyone my name is Guy Dobrin. I am the shinshin at Kol RInah, Temple Israel, and the Israeli Scouts. My home in Israel is KIbbutz Merhavia. I have two brothers, and a wonderful family that lives nearby in my kibbutz. In my free time I enjoy hiking, playing guitar, and making food. These last two months have been amazing and I am looking forward to every day here in the community. See you soon!

Maya Shapira, Shelly Udovick, Roi Mast, and Eshel Ben Dor


We are excited to introduce you all to the fifth cohort of Shinshinim who arrived to St. Louis in mid-August!

Meet Maya Shapira, Shelly Udovick, Roi Mast and Eshel Ben Dor. Maya works at Shaare Emeth, Shelly is at Saul Mirowitz Jewish Day School, Roi works at Kol Rinah and United Hebrew and Eshel works with the Israeli Scouts and Temple Emanuel. See below a short intro from each of them:

My name is Maya Shapira and I am going to be the new Shinshinit at Shaare Emeth. I am 17 years old from Haifa, where I live with my parents. I have one older sister, who currently lives in NYC. My majors at school are: communication, public diplomacy, photography, chemistry and literature. In my free time I love dancing ballet, photography, aviation and art. In addition, I volunteer at the Israeli Scouts with children with special needs. I am so excited to get to know you all!

Shalom! My name is Shelly and I am 18 years old. I am the new Shinshinit at Mirowitz Jewish Day school. I live in Yokneam, which is St. Louis’ Partnership Region. My majors in high school were biology, sociology and psychology. I volunteered for several years at Magen David Adom and I also swam competitively for many years. I really love to travel in Israel, I love pets and my favorite animals are cats :). I am super excited to meet you all!!

Hi everybody!! My name is Roi Mast and I am the new Shinshin at United Hebrew, Kol Rinah and the Jewish Federation! I live in a small town called “Allone Abba”, which is located in Jezreel Valley in Northern Israel. I live with my parents, brother and sister. I am the youngest in my family. Our house is surrounded by green fields and trees, so I really like to walk around there with my friends, family, and my dog. My majors in high school are Arabic and physics. I love listening to music!
Can’t wait to meet everyone!!

Shalom! My name is Eshel Ben Dor, and I am the new Shinshinit at Temple Emanuel and the Israeli Scouts! I live in a small moshav an hour north of Tel- Aviv called Herev-Le’et. My majors in high school included literature and computer science. I also belonged to a theater group while I was in school. I was a volunteer at Magen David Adom and I was part of the youth movement “HaYichud HaChlakai.” I love to travel, listen to music, and meet new people.
I’m so excited for this year of service in St. Louis and I can’t wait to get to know all of you!


Gilad Helbatz Sofer, Dana Koren, and Evyatar Shachar


We are so excited to welcome the fourth cohort of Shinshinim to our community: Gilad Helbatz Sofer, Dana Koren and Evyatar Shachar. We have expanded the program and increased the number of Shinshinim to three as well as the number of partner organizations working with them. Gilad is working full time at Saul Mirowitz Jewish Community School, Dana is working at Temple Emanuel, United Hebrew and the Israeli Scouts, and Evyatar is working at Temple Israel, Kol Rinah and the Jewish Federation.

Message from Gilad
Shalom St. Louis Jewish community! My name is Gilad and I’m going to be the new Shinshin at Mirowitz. I live in a small village in northern Israel called Nofit, which is about 20 minutes from Haifa. I have been doing Triathlons since 7th grade and in the past, I used to participate competitively. I love to cook for my family and friends and I also enjoy listening to music. I also love traveling and hiking. Can’t wait to meet y’all!

Message from Dana
Shalom everybody! My name is Dana Koren and I’m the new Shinshinit at the Israeli Scouts, United Hebrew, and Temple Emanuel congregations! I am so excited to be here! I live in Kibbutz Kfar-Ruppin in northern Israel. My Kibbutz is located in Emek HaMaayanot (valley of springs), we have lots of springs and such beautiful nature. I love music! I sing and play the piano. I also like to bake, travel, act, and to work out. My role in the army after my year of service here in St. Louis will be a Combat Fitness Instructor. I can’t wait to get to know you all and share Israel through my eyes.

Message from Evyatar
Shalom! My name is Evyatar Shachar and I am so excited to be a Shinshin in St. Louis at Kol Rinah, Temple Israel and the Jewish Federation. From the first day I remember, I loved being outdoors: hiking, breathing fresh air and being in nature. I love the aviation world and dreamed from an early age to get my wings and become an airline pilot. I live in Ashkelon with my parents and my older sister. Ashkelon is located on the southern coastal plain, it’s about an hour drive to Jerusalem and to Tel-Aviv, and about 8 miles north of the border with the Gaza Strip. As a teenager who grew up in Ashkelon all his life under missile attacks, I developed the ability to adapt to changes quite quickly and move from my life to emergency and back. Reality has taught me that my generation- the future generation, must change the situation we are in, and hope for a better, more peaceful world. Therefore, I believe in the way of talk and peace and believe that the situation can be changed to such that we can live with complete own safe and happiness. I am also active for the environment and a partner in the global youth protest in the fight against climate change. I am looking forward to meeting everyone!


Shaked Birenboim and Guy Nachum


We are so excited to introduce our third cohort of Shinshinim: Shaked Birenboim and Guy Nachum. They will be arriving to St. Louis at the end of August and will live and work in our community for one year. The Shinshinim program is a partnership between the Jewish Agency for Israel, the Jewish Federation of St. Louis, and four local congregations, Shaare Emeth, B’nai Amoona, Kol Rinah, and United Hebrew. Shaked will be at congregations Shaare Emeth and Kol Rinah, while Guy will be at congregations United Hebrew and B’nai Amoona. Click here to watch their welcome video on YouTube.

Message from Shaked
Hi! My name is Shaked Birenboim, I am 18 years old. I live in kibbutz Mishmar HaEmek, which is located in the Partnership Area, in the north of Israel. I have two younger sisters. I majored in Arabic and theatre while in high school. I love playing sports, acting, going on hiking trips, hanging out with friends, and spending time with my family. I am so excited to be the next Shinshinit in St. Louis and can’t wait to meet you all!

Message from Guy
Hello everyone! My name is Guy Nachum and I am the new Shinshin for St. Louis! I am so excited for the opportunity and to meet all of you in a couple of months! I’ll tell you a little bit about myself: I am 18 years old, and I live with my older sister and parents in a Moshav close to Jerusalem. My majors in school were social studies and Arabic. I have been a gymnast since I was seven years old, and I love to sing and travel the world! Can’t wait to see you and get to know you!

Lir Barazani and Snir Dagan


The second cohort of Shinshinim, Lir Barazani and Snir Dagan, arrived to St. Louis in late August 2018.

Lir is from Modi’in, which is a town near Jerusalem. Her majors in high school were chemistry and biology. She would eventually like to be a physician. Lir was a counselor for the Maccabi youth movement for the last few years working in logistics and youth training, and served as the youth movement’s community relations. Lir founded an organization to help children with special needs who are on the autism spectrum. Lir splits her time between B’nai Amoona and United Hebrew congregations.

Snir is from Ein Yahav, which is a kibbutz in southern Israel, and spends his time with his blended family. He has three younger siblings and a dog. He majored in computer programming in high school and would like to pursue this as his career. He served as a counselor in Bnai Ha’moshavim youth movement for a few years. Snir participated in the exclusive Jewish Agency’s Rehovot-Minneapolis P2G trip. Snir works at congregations Shaare Emeth and Kol Rinah.

Follow along their journey in St. Louis via their weekly blog, Facebook, or Instagram!

You can also reach out to them via email at and


Gal Roberman and Yuval Cohen


Our first Shinshinim, Gal Roberman and Yuval Cohen, arrived to St. Louis in August 2017 and worked in our community for one year.

Gal lives in Kerem Maharal, which is in the northern part of Israel. Her high school majors were psychology and agricultural sciences. Gal worked with special needs children in an after-school program she established, and organized arts and sports programming for the children. Her hobbies are riding horses and travelling. While living in St. Louis, Gal split her time between Congregation Shaare Emeth and Kol Rinah throughout the school year. She worked at Camp Emeth during the summer before returning to Israel.

Yuval is from Lapid, which is a small community close to Jerusalem. His high school majors were biology and art. He was a professional dancer and belonged to an international troop. Yuval was the head of the Tzofim (boy scouts) movement in his town and worked at summer camps and after-school programs for several years. While living in St. Louis, Yuval worked at congregations United Hebrew and Bnai Amoona. During the summer, he worked at B’nai Amoona’s Ramot Amoona and B’nai Ami camps.

Gal and Yuval organized two community wide events. In January of 2018, they brought Israeli actor and speaker Dean Miroshnikov, who spoke about his experience immigrating to Israel and his tenure in the IDF commando unit. Their second event was a meaningful Yom HaZikaron program for all teens in the community.

If you wish to reach out to Gal or Yuval, please email them at and