Bloomberg declares May Birthright Israel month in N.Y.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has declared May Birthright Israel month.

Bloomberg will issue a formal proclamation at an event Wednesday evening in New York City set to be attended by more than 1,000 alumni of the free Israel trip for Jews aged 18 to 26.

The Taglit-Birthright Israel organization said May will feature events in cities across North America for trip alumni, special Birthright Shabbat celebrations at more than 100 synagogues, visits to communities by Israeli soldiers who participated in Birthright Israel trips and special donor functions.

The organization this month plans to publicize its goal of increasing participation from 30,000 a year to 51,000 a year by 2013, or one of every two young Jewish adults.

In January, the government of Israel announced that it would contribute $100 million to Taglit-Birthright Israel over the next three years. Birthright also plans to increase its fundraising this year by $10 million to $58.6 million, and then add another $20 million next year in order reach its participant goal for 2013.