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Teens Volunteer at HUC-JIR, NYC Soup Kitchen

Connecting teens

In our two active youth groups, our TINW teens connect to other teens outside of the classroom to socialize, bond, and perform acts of tikkun olam (repairing the world).  Some of our activities have included:

  • Apple picking, bowling, and laser tag with the group
  • Working to rebuild a home with Habitat for Humanity
  • Volunteering at HUC-JIR Soup Kitchen in NYC
Temple Israel Program for Junior (TIPJY) & Senior (TIPSY) Youth

TIPSY Year End Slideshow 2018-19

rosh hodesh

In CJL’s Rosh Hodesh program, sponsored by Sisterhood and coordinated with CJL Wednesday sessions, teen girls have the opportunity to gather in a safe space to speak openly about issues they care about and to address their challenges, such as body image, relational aggression, over-sexualization, competition, peer pressure, stress, cyberbullying, sexting, and harassment.  We are free to share our stories, or choose not to share them, in our sacred space.  We may watch videos, read articles, and talk about the MeToo Movement, Black Lives Matter, or other relevant topics, viewing these discussions through both a secular and a Jewish lens.

Adolescence is a confusing time, and we have found consistently that girls crave a safe space to explore questions relating to their coming of age as young women. They want to be treated with respect, challenged by critical thinking, and to be in an environment where the pressure to be cool or to gain attention from the opposite sex is temporarily lifted. They want to determine for themselves what it means to be a woman, and they appreciate the support and the opportunity to do so.

In addition to learning about what it means to be a Jewish woman, the teen girls also really connect with one another, forming lasting, trusting friendships within a small community support group of their own.  Being a part of this group can help these young women stay connected to Jewish life and each other long after they have finished their formal Jewish education.  For more information, please contact our Rosh Hodesh group leader, Stacy Shapiro.


shevet achim

The Shevet Achim program, sponsored by Brotherhood and coordinated with CJL Wednesday sessions, is a fun way for 8th and 9th grade teen guys to get together in a safe space to speak openly about issues they care about and deal with on a regular basis, such as friendship, competition, stress, machismo, and peer pressure.  In the group, guys react to provocative questions and share stories about their own experiences of what it is like to become a man in today's world.

We bond over food, by playing physical games, and by looking deeper into how men / people relate on various levels in competitive and non-competitive ways.  We watch media clips, read short stories and passages from Jewish texts, and talk about how men are portrayed in our society, how to treat girls and women respectfully, and how we can add to our "toolbox" of ways that expand the definition of manhood / peoplehood.  We view these activities and discussions through both a secular and a Jewish lens.

There is so much drop-out from religious life after Bar Mitzvah.  Shevet Achim is a real way to stem that tide and to help our teenage guys to remain engaged.  It is wonderful to watch guys from different towns, schools, and backgrounds bond in a unique way through their time together in this program.  For more information, please contact our Shevet Achim group leader, Steve Samuels.

TINW Teens Speak on Gun Violence, Reproductive Rights and Mental Health

Six of our confirmation (10th grade) students traveled to Washington, D.C. with Rabbi Jaech last week where they wrote and delivered impressive presentations to congressional staff. See their presentations.

Thu, April 9 2020 15 Nisan 5780