What a phenomenal thing to do with stand up comedy! Avi Liberman, a successful actor and stand-up comedian appearing on major American television and radio stations, has been doing bi-annual comedy tours in Israel to raise morale for close to 15 years donating all of the proceeds to charity. He brings with him a range of professional comedians, many not Jewish, to perform and experience Israel from a different perspective than they have seen on the news. Comedian Butch Bradley came on the tour for the first time in 2009. He was overwhelmed by the country and especially by Jerusalem. “”I felt like I was walking in a museum in the Old City – a museum I could feel and touch. It was overwhelmingly emotional; I felt like crying.”, he told Jerusalem Post writer David Horovitz.
What is truly poignant is that the proceeds of the tour go to the Koby Mandell foundation. Koby Mandell and his friend, Yosef, when taking a hike near their homes in Gush Etzion, were brutally stabbed and stoned to death by a Palestinian terrorist who lived in the area. Kobi’s mother, Sherri, an author and journalist, along with his father Seth, created the Koby Mandell Foundation which runs healing programs for those who have lost family members due to terror. Sherri explains that the comedy tour is the perfect tribute to Koby who was constantly joking, laughing and making others laugh with him.