Teen Social Justice

Overview

Netivot Shalom is starting a new social justice program for teens this fall. Teens will build their Jewish social justice toolkit by learning to analyze power, systems of oppression, privilege, marginalization, and modes of social change. In a fun and supportive environment, we will seek to answer the questions: What does Judaism teach us about the pursuit of social justice, and how does it help us get there? What is power, systemic oppression, privilege, and justice, and what are the relationships between these concepts? What is each of our roles in fighting the varied forms of oppression that cause suffering in this world? 

In the winter and spring, as a group, teens will design a meaningful project addressing the root causes of an injustice that is important to them. Our plan is to meet in-person, according to Netivot’s evolving COVID-19 guidelines. Meetings will take place every other week, with one core content workshop and one experiential session or guest speaker each month.

RSVP here for Fall events!

Frequently Asked Questions

When does the program begin, and when will it meet?

Program Kickoff: Tuesday, Aug 31st 7-9pm at Netivot Shalom

Regular meeting times, beginning Oct 5th: every other Tuesday from 7-9pm (see below for specific dates)

We’ve also got a few special High Holy Day events and workshops planned in September – stay tuned for specifics!

How is this program unique?

While there are many fantastic Jewish social justice programs out there, this one is housed within Netivot Shalom, and therefore will be tied to our specific community and congregational life. Our hope is that through participating, Netivot teens will find a way into learning about social justice and meaningful action.

Who can attend? Can I bring my friend if they are not a Netivot Shalom member? Do you have to be Jewish?

Any teen 13 and up can attend this program. Yes, please bring your friend! No, you do not have to be Jewish to participate.

Where will we be meeting? Will it be in person?

Our goal is to meet in-person, according to Netivot’s evolving COVID-19 guidelines. As safety permits, we will meet in the Netivot Shalom building for on-site workshops, and at nearby locations for experiential events. The COVID-19 safety protocols of Netivot Shalom will be in place.

Do I need to be vaccinated?

If you are eligible to be vaccinated and can do so safely, we ask that you be vaccinated in order to attend our programs. 

What will this program be called?

We have purposely waited on coming up with a name so that teens in the program can create something together that feels meaningful and true. In the meanwhile, “Teen Social Justice Program” is kind of a mouthful, but we think it’s worth the wait!

How was this program developed, and who will be teaching?

This program was developed in response to a sense that teens and teen voices deserve to be more centered and empowered in Netivot Shalom, particularly when it comes to matters of justice. After receiving a grant from The Jewish Teen Initiative, Netivot hired Yael Platt to design and run this program. Yael is a Jewish educator, theater instructor, and consent educator with a passion for racial and gender justice, who grew up in the Netivot community.

Can I get school community service credit for participation?

Our focus will primarily be on equipping ourselves with social justice skills, knowledge and action. Though volunteering may potentially play a role in the group action project we develop, most of our time will not be spent doing direct service work. If you are interested in fulfilling your community service requirements through participation in this program, Yael would be happy to work with you to explore whether our program meets your school’s requirements.

What does this program cost?

There is no cost for participation. This program is generously funded by a grant from The Jewish Teen Education and Engagement Initiative (Teen Initiative), which is a project of the Jewish Community Federation and Endowment Fund with generous support from The Jim Joseph Foundation and local funders.

Will there be accommodations for accessibility needs, whether related to COVID, physical needs, neurodiversity, or anything else?

Inclusivity and accessibility are a priority of our programs at Netivot Shalom. If you have any questions, ideas, or requests around accessibility or accommodations of any kind, please reach out to yael@netivotshalom.org

How do I sign up?

You can come to as many or as few workshops and events as you like, although we think it will be more meaningful and interesting if you come regularly. We’ll send out an email each month describing upcoming workshops and ask you to RSVP – please tell us your preferred form of communication on the Interest Form!

IMPORTANT DATES

8/31 Program Kickoff at Netivot Shalom, 7-9pm

9/14 and 9/26 – Save these dates for High Holiday offerings – more details to come!

Regular Meeting Times (Tuesdays 7-9pm):

10/5, 10/19, 11/2, 11/16, 11/30, 12/14

Program continues in 2022 – dates forthcoming!

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Yael Platt (she/her) is an artist, Jewish educator, and theater person who grew up at Netivot Shalom and went through the Amitim program. She is passionate about exploring the beauties and challenges of Judaism, and using our ancient teachings to more deeply understand ourselves, systems of oppression, and what powers we hold as changemakers and students of justice. Yael also teaches Hebrew school at Kehilla Community Synagogue and leads consent workshops with Shalom Bayit. You can reach her at yael@netivotshalom.org.