Director of Community Engagement...

It’s a big title — and one that I am thrilled to be taking up

I take a lot of inspiration from a community that I discovered quite by accident while I was living and studying in Israel — the CouchSurfing community. What is that, you ask? CouchSurfing is an online community of travellers who open their homes to fellow travellers. As a host and as a guest, I’ve welcomed and been welcomed by dozens of people from all around the world, some of whom I’ve developed lasting friendships with after sharing just a few days.

CouchSurfing is about more than simply travelling on the cheap. It is dedicated to building connections and forming relationships among people with something in common: the love of travel. They community thrives by following five simple rules:

Share Your Life - Couchsurfing is about sharing your life, your experiences, your journey, your home, your extra almonds or a majestic sunset. We believe that the spirit of generosity, when applied liberally, has the power to profoundly change the world.

Create Connection - Connection makes us happier; we need more of it. Connecting with and accepting the kindness of “strangers” strengthens our faith in each other and helps us all become better people.

Offer Kindness - Tolerance, respect and appreciation for differences are embodied in kindness.

Stay Curious - We appreciate and share a desire to learn about one another, about the world and about how we can grow as people and become better global citizens through travel.

Leave It Better Than You Found It - This applies to the world, to relationships, to your host’s home or to the sidewalk you meander down on your way to the coffee shop. We’re here to make the world better, to enhance each other’s lives and to become stronger in that purpose by coming together.

Continue reading on Page 6 of the Holy Blossom Temple Bulletin, available online here...