By Samantha Prager, NFTY-PAR SAVP 2011-2013
Spring Kallah is the last event in the NFTY-PAR calendar year. It is always sad to see the seniors leave however it is almost magical to watch the generational leadership PAR values so much, come into play. A core value in NFTY is that of generational leadership. NFTY-PAR installs the New Board at this event and it is one of the most meaningful experiences to both watch and participate in. After Havdalah, and senior roasts, both the New and Old Boards line up, in reverse gavel order, starting with the CVP and ending with President. At the start of the ceremony the Old Board has their candles lit, and prepares to light their successor’s candle.
I watched as my fellow Board members lit their successor’s candles, and passed the torch down to another wonderful generation of NFTY-PAR leadership. Before I knew it, it was my turn, to pass the Social Action Vice President position to the lovely Erica Strauss. I gave my few words of wisdom, and lit her candle, knowing that I have left PAR in great hands.
Being in NFTY changes a person for the better. There are not many communities where teens have an opportunity to be a part of while feeling accepting and welcomed. NFTY-PAR is a place that I have called my home for the past four years. I have grown and transformed into the person and leader I am today. Something I have learned is that NFTY-PAR is not a place. It is an atmosphere created by the people in it, and that atmosphere can transform any room. NFTY-PAR will stay with all of the seniors for years to come, and will continue to grow into whatever future generations want it to be.
I am so thankful of everything NFTY has given me, but more importantly, I cannot wait to see where NFTY-PAR will continue to go. Future leaders are made in NFTY-PAR, and watching generations of leaders go through PAR within my four years is something that words cannot describe. I consider myself lucky to be part of such an accepting and transforming community. With guidance from the New Board, and the continuous participation of both present, past, and future members, NFTY-PAR will continue to flourish.