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Call for Papers: My Herzl International Youth Essay Competition

Call for Papers

Calling all 13-17 year olds from around the Jewish world!

Are you passionate about Jewish pride? Israel? Zionism? Do you love writing and interested in exploring how Jewish history relates to you and to the future?

The My Herzl Youth Essay competition, organized by The Israel Forever Foundation, aims to showcase the relevance of Herzl as a visionary Jewish leader in modern times. This international essay competition will focus on the legacy of Herzl as envisioned by you, today’s Jewish youth and the leaders of the next generation.

If you are imaginative and want to make a difference, have your voice heard for the sake of Zion, for the legacy of Herzl, for the sake of Israel and the future of the Jewish People. Share your voice as a Virtual Citizen of Israel.


Guiding Questions for Essays:
You may select one or more of these questions, or use them as a guide for crafting your own essay question.

  • What dream for the Jewish people do you think is impossible to achieve, that you would be willing to work towards?  How would you go about doing it?
  • What would be the first item on the agenda of a Zionist Congress you would call?
  • Now that there is a Jewish State, what is the 21st century universal goal for the Jewish people?  What role would you play in helping to achieve that goal?
  • How do tradition and start-up modernity merge in Israel and how is this a part of Herzl’s legacy? 
  • Herzl’s dream was fulfilled but not completed.  What do you think is needed to complete the dream, and what would you do to help complete it?
  • What is the significance of the memory of the Shoah to Herzl’s legacy?
  • What is your Altneuland- the combination of new and old together?
  • How does Herzl’s balcony pose symbolize his dream of the Jewish People to be in Israel?
  • Fill in the blanks: If you _________ it, it is not a ____________.   Why would this be your motto?

Read through the rules, get writing and SUBMIT!
Deadline: November 29, 2019
Questions? Please contact


  • To increase understanding of the significance of Zionism at its inception
  • To inspire young Jews to consider the challenges Herzl faced in a pre-Israel world
  • To explore the relevance of Herzl’s legacy to Jewish youth today and for the future
  • To recognize the challenges of Zionism in facing the future
  • To revitalize an Israel-inspired approach to current challenges facing the Jewish people as a whole 
  • To encourage youth to share their voice, opinion, and commitment to Herzl’s legacy
  • To inspire an exciting exchange of views on Judaism, the Israeli present, and the Jewish Diaspora through the eyes of Jewish youth

Submission Guidelines:

  • The competition is open to members of the global Jewish community ages 13-17 years old. 
  • Essays should not exceed 2,500 words in length.
  • All essays must be in English or Hebrew.
  • Only one entry per applicant.
  • The deadline for submissions is 29 November 2019.
  • Make sure to read the complete terms and conditions for essay submission thoroughly. 
  • Follow us for competition updates on TwitterFacebook and Instagram and be sure to follow and use the hashtag #MyHerzlWins.
  • The three finalists will be announced February 2020. 
  • The final winner will be chosen via a public vote.


  • The winning ideas will be reviewed by an exclusive panel of judges.
  • Monetary prizes will be awarded for outstanding essays.
  • Winner and one companion will win 2 tickets to Israel to present their essays to the delegates of the World Zionist Congress 2020. Presentation training will be provided before delivering essay live on stage.
  • Winning essays will be shared across Israel Forever and partnering organization media channels.
  • Every applicant will receive a certificate of participation.

Herzl’s dream was partially fulfilled with the creation of the State of Israel, but it has not yet been completed. Come engage with one of our great leaders of Jewish history!

How are you Living the Legacy?
Posted in AZYC, Next Generation

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