When our teens participate in YALA, they learn about and connect to Jewish life by actively experiencing it! YALA, Hebrew for “let’s go!” combines experiential education and social experiences in a cohesive program that fosters Jewish identity development, community-building, leadership skills and deep connection to Jewish life.
The Congregation of Reform Judaism’s youth programming provides our youth with opportunities to engage in Jewish life at CRJ and in the broader Jewish community. From experiential learning programs to social events to social action experiences to volunteer opportunities and trips, our wide variety of experiences come from the foundation that we all learn Torah in our own meaningful ways.
For more information or questions contact Lauren Oback, Director of Programming and Youth Engagement, firstname.lastname@example.org or 407-645-0444
Held on Monday nights, YALA YOUniversity is the core of the YALA program. Teens will grow socially, spiritually and Judaically through a variety of diverse experiences including chuggim (electives) and chavurot (interest-based groups). Teens come together for dinner to kick off Monday nights and also come together for youth group in the youth lounge with the Youth Staff.
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Join Rabbi Engel, Cantor Jacki and Lauren Oback in Washington, D.C. for a fun and meaningful weekend with teens from coast to coast and learn about the Jewish imperative for justice and the Reform Movement’s advocacy positions on critical public policy issues. Students spend the weekend learning about major social justice issues and the Jewish values that inform the Reform Movement’s advocacy, culminating on Monday when everyone heads to Capitol Hill to lobby their representatives in Congress on an issue of their choice.
Katan-Gadol (Little/Big) provides 7th-12th graders with a framework to develop and sustain mentoring relationships. Jr. GORFTY members are matched with GORFTY members and new GORFTY members are paired with seasoned GORFTY members. Throughout the year, “littles” receive advice, encouragement, information about youth group, and insight from older peers. “Bigs”, in turn, gain satisfaction and knowledge from guiding younger peers while fostering a sense of community. Pairs are matched and overseen by Lauren Oback.
Held on Thursdays once per month – GIRLSPACE is designed to provide a celebratory, empowering setting where girls can support each other in growing and learning while having lots of fun. Group meet-ups include a mix of discussion, socializing, cooking, making crafts, and enjoying snacks!
Atid, (future) Advisors support the CRJ Youth Program by serving as Jr. Youth Advisors. Our Atid program offers 8th-12th grade teens the opportunity to develop communication and leadership skills, to increase self-confidence, express Jewish values, and learn group leading techniques by assisting Youth Advisors during youth programs. *SPACE IS LIMITED! Applications must be submitted by August 23rd!
Held on Wednesdays twice per month – JEWman Group is designed to provide a relaxed setting where guys can come together informally. Meet-ups include a mix of basketball, informal discussions in the youth lounge, pool/darts, snacks and more!