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“We Must Live for Today; We Must Build for Tomorrow”: Social Action in NFTY



By Sophie Foxman The concept of tikkun olam (repairing the world) was introduced into Judaism in the early rabbinic period. It was introduced to me — and has shaped my life in astonishing ways since then — when I entered NFTY. Growing up, I idealistically believed I could do anything and help everyone, a concept […]

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NFTY of the 1960s



NFTY in the 1960s was remarkably like NFTY today.  Except in those areas where it was different. It was the same because, in most ways, kids are the same. Adolescence is a tumultuous time when kids are suddenly vulnerable and suddenly sexual.  They are desperate to know who cares about them.  They want to find […]

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Mitzvah Goreret Mitzvah



By Alexa Maltby It isn’t every day that you have a life-changing experience, so to say I had a life-changing summer is a blessing. Urban Mitzvah Corps could easily be described as a six-week Jewish social action summer program. But life changing experiences aren’t that easy to describe. For the past two summers I took […]

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WRJ Grants Encourage Female Enrollment at URJ Sci-Tech Academy



As the enrollment level of boys surpasses that of girls for the inaugural summer at the URJ 6 Points Sci-Tech Academy, Women of Reform Judaism (WRJ) has made a $5,000 grant from its YES (Youth, Education, & Special Projects) Fund to provide scholarships for female campers. The scholarships are meant to encourage and support the […]

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SING OUT! The Beginnings of NFTY Music: A Look at the First Songs We Sang, Part Two



By Cantor Wally Schachet-Briskin The music and the style of song leading as it has been popularized among Reform youth has moved the Jewish world. Music in NFTY and Reform camps, which began in 1951 in Wisconsin, seems to have been defined by the era in which it was sung, affected greatly by world events, […]

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Community. Prayer. Holiness.



By Rose Snitz As people gather and voices come together in harmony, the holiness of the space begins to form. From Shabbat services in local communities to regional Havdalah services, to closing rituals during the North American Convention, there’s always an unexplainable feeling of connection and community at NFTY events. Picture yourself overlooking a group […]

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The NFTY 50′s



By Eleanor Schwartz Excerpted from “Ani V’atah” NFTY Newsletter, February 2005. This decade was a Golden Era for NFTY; a time of innovation and creative energy, a search for and development of identity with an agenda for action within the congregation; the affirmation that teens and the Temple Youth Group (TYG) had come of age. […]

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URJ Kutz Camp – NFTY’s Physical Address



By Melissa Frey When Hattie and Milton Kutz gifted $100,000 of their estate toward the creation of a Reform Movement leadership training summer program for teens, the impact of their vision likely could not have been imagined. Tens of thousands of people, both young and young at heart, including many of the most influential professional and volunteer […]

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Remembering Mark Levy



Recently, I attended the funeral of Mark Levy, z”l, in Los Angeles and had the honor of celebrating his life. Mark and his wife, Peachy, have been deeply committed to the future of the Jewish people for decades. Through their incredible leadership, they have distinguished themselves as two of the Reform Movement’s most generous donors. […]

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URJ Camp Offers Incentive Program for Jewish Military Families



The URJ is proud to announce an innovative Camper Incentive Program for Jewish Military Families on Active Duty, open to Jewish families with at least one parent on Active Duty in the United States Armed Forces. The program will be offered at the URJ Henry S. Jacobs Camp in Utica, MS, which has served more […]

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NFTY-NAR Kallah: Can Dads be NFTYites, Too?!



Earlier this winter, my synagogue played host to NFTY-NAR’s Winter Kallah. Because we’re of the “go big or go home” belief, our cantor arranged for Jewish musician Dan Nichols to be our artist-in-residence the same weekend. Ever a consummate mensch, Dan participated the entire weekend in activities with NFTY, the religious school, and programs for […]

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SING OUT! The Beginnings of NFTY Music: A Look at the First Songs We Sang



By Cantor Wally Schachet-Briskin I found myself (quite literally) at Reform Jewish summer camp. More than anything, it was the music that drew me into experiencing Jewish life with all my heart, with all my soul, and with all my might. How did music in youth grouping touch something Jewish so deep inside me? The […]

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Join Me, Shayna, at Camp This Summer



by Shayna Simon My name is Shayna Simon I am 12 years old. I have attended Camp Chazak at URJ Eisner and Crane Lake in Massachusetts for the last 2 summers. This camp is for kids like me that may have some challenges and just need some direction to stay focused and enjoy this wonderful […]

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NFTY at Women of the Wall



By Sarah Rosemont This past November, I traveled to Israel as part of a NFTY delegation team in honor of the 25th anniversary of the Women of the Wall. Today, more than two months later, I still don’t know how to describe the trip in a way that will do it justice. How can I […]

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