Listed below are current community needs in the area of Youth. If you have any questions after reviewing the information provided, please contact Beatrice Fine.
Congregation Beth Torah in cooperation with The Temple, Congregation Temple B'nai Jehudah, Congregation Beth Shalom, Kehilath Israel Synagogue and Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy: Rosh Hodesh: It's a Girl Thing!
Rosh Hodesh: It’s a Girl Thing! is an experiential education program that uses Jewish teachings to give girls a place to feel safe, articulate their deepest concerns, consider the impact of gender on their daily lives, have fun, and be "real" with their peers. Through discussion, arts & crafts, creative ritual, games, and drama, the girls and their leaders draw on Jewish values and a gender lens to explore the issues the girls care about most, such as body image, friendship, relationships, family, competition, and stress. Funding will help train facilitators to run the program at 5 area synagogues. Support this program with your fund
Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy: Needs-Based Financial Assistance Program
This school year, 225 children enrolled in Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy, representing 161 families. 117 students still need some sort of financial subsidy. Any size contribution would be appreciated. Support this program with your fund
Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy: Social Justice Program
HBHA has joined forces with a leadership group from University Academy, as well as the Metropolitan Organization for Racial and Economic Equity (MORE2), to identify and tackle social justice issues in the Greater Kansas City area. These projects, from healthcare to early childhood education to positive police and community relationships, help students gain insight, understanding and empathy for those who lack the basic needs, rights or skills that most of us take for granted. Goals of the program include providing HBHA students an unparalleled educational opportunity to effect positive change in the community and to create bridges between the Jewish community and other communities in Kansas City. The larger Jewish community will benefit from having these emerging leaders in their midst. Support this program with your fund
The J: J Camp Shlichim
Each summer, the Jewish Community Center Camp, J Camp, arranges to bring Israeli young adults as Shlichim (Emissaries) to Kansas City. The Shlichim work as day camp staff, teaching Israeli cultural activities and sharing their love of Israel. J Camp staff work with the Jewish Community Center Association (JCCA) and The Jewish Agency for Israel to do the recruitment, background checks and arrangements to bring the Shlichim to the United States. J Camp staff recruit area Jewish families to host the Shlichim, and share the American culture and Kansas City highlights. The cost for bringing two Shlichim to J Camp for the summer is $4000 per person, for a total of $8,000. J Camp is looking for an individual, foundation or organization that would be willing to sponsor the Shlichim so that they can share their knowledge, experiences, and love of Israel with the J Campers. Support this program through your fund
The J: Maccabi Games and ArtsFest Scholarships
The JCC Maccabi Games® are an Olympic-style sporting competition held each summer in North America and one of the largest organized sports programs for Jewish teens (ages 13-16) in the world. This week-long, multi-sport cultural event will utilize venues throughout Miami-Dade County and feature competitions in various sports such as baseball, basketball, soccer, softball, swim, tennis, dance, and volleyball. The week of competition is enriched by a wide array of cultural and social activities.
ArtsFest® is a unique program for creative Jewish teens (ages 12-17) who have a strong interest in the arts. Every summer, in conjunction with JCC Maccabi Games, ArtsFest aims to inspire participants to explore their individuality and engage passionately with their creativity through a dynamic combination of workshops, performance, exhibition, community service, and social activities. The program allows teens to explore their artistic spirit, gain new skills and work with top-level Artists in Residence. The ArtsFest® experience includes opportunities for participants to expand their knowledge of Jewish heritage, enrich their Jewish identities and develop lifelong friendships. Maccabi participants learn the value of teamwork, integrity, cultural pride and community service, while expanding an appreciation of Jewish values and building lifelong friendships.
Cost: $1,350 or $1,250 with JCC member discount; optional fundraising available. Scholarships money is greatly needed to help make this enriching experience available to more teens, as helping this age group stay connected to Judaism is so critical. Support this program through your fund
The J: Special Needs Inclusion Programming – CDC and Camp
The J’s goal is to build the capacity and effectiveness of its Child Development Center and Day Camp to be more inclusive and welcoming to children with special needs. They hope to achieve: positive academic and social impact for students with disabilities; an environment that nurtures the whole child and fosters strong partnerships with all families; greater program participation and success by all children who benefit from a highly-trained, multidisciplinary staff; and, a more diverse, respectful community. Support this program with your fund
Jewish Family Services: Mental Health Coalition –Teen Mental Health Campaign
Individuals, and especially teenagers, living with mental illness certainly face remarkable challenges in everyday life. This program focuses on helping teens deal with those challenges and avoid crises whenever possible. Goals of the Teen Mental Health Campaign include: creating a campaign specifically targeted to teenagers, and implementing it in local high schools or youth organizations, including Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy and programs such as BBYO, USY and NFTY; developing a more collaborative network of agencies that provide suicide prevention programs or serve local teens who have mental health issues; and increasing teenagers’ accessibility to information about mental illness during both in-school and out-of-school time. Support this program with your fund
Jewish Federation: Guardian Society Scholarships for Jewish Summer Camp
The Foundation for Jewish Camp website says it best: "Jewish camp weaves Jewish values, culture, and traditions into the fabric of camp, helping campers connect to their own identity and the larger Jewish community." When the Kansas City Jewish orphanage of the early 1900’s closed, Rabbi Gershon Hadas convinced the leadership to dedicate the remaining funds to send children to Jewish summer camps. For over fifty years, the Rabbi Gershon Hadas Guardian Society for Jewish Children has provided much needed financial assistance to children who wish to have this special experience. Each year they receive thousands of dollars in requests and can only provide between $250 and $500 scholarships for each child. Every dollar raised goes to support children. Support this program with your fund
JVS: Project SOAR (Strengthening Opportunities for Adolescent Refugees)
Refugee Youth face many challenges in succeeding in the U.S. school system. This project addresses a number of the barriers and provides a support system for students and their families. Refugee children have to learn to speak English, adjust to a very different environment, learn new cultural norms, and make new friends. In addition, refugee youth have often experienced trauma from their migration experience and years in the refugee camps, which leads to an increased prevalence of depression and anxiety. They are also frequent targets of bullying in school, as their language, religion and culture differs dramatically from their American-born peers. JVS provides these youth, through the support of a social worker and play therapist, tools and materials needed to help them express and cope with their experiences in a healthy way. Support this program with your fund
KU Hillel: Challah for Hunger
Challah for Hunger is a student-led program that educates students on how to make challah within a Jewish context while also informing students about hunger-related issues in the local and global communities. Through baking events coordinated by student leaders, a formal atmosphere of philanthropy and social justice is created within both the KU Hillel community and the university community-at-large from this program. The program helps build Jewish identity and offers entrepreneurial and social action leadership opportunities for Jewish students. Support this program with your fund
KU Hillel: European Leadership Mission (ELM)
European Leadership Mission (ELM): KU Hillel’s ELM is a high-level winter break trip to Sofia, Bulgaria and Bucharest, Romania for 20 Jewish student leaders. The trip costs $1,000 which covers a round trip flight and all ground costs while in Europe. Participants are responsible for their domestic flight(s) and spending money.
- $500 will help subsidize trip costs for 1 KU Hillel student leader
- $1,000 will send one student on ELM who may otherwise not be able to attend
- $3,000 will allow KU Hillel to offer numerous scholarships for various students in need
Support this program with your fund
KU Hillel: National Basketball Tournament & Shabbaton
This tournament brings Jewish college students from across the country together for a weekend of sport and community building. Housed annually at the University of Maryland Hillel, the tournament encompasses a memorable weekend where students from Hillels from across the country compete for the prized ‘Kiddish Cup’ and celebrate Shabbat together. Students are responsible for travel expenses.
- $250 subsidizes travel for 1 student
- $1,000 covers team registration costs
- $2,000 would allow KU Hillel to send two teams to compete
Support this program with your fund
KU Hillel: Shabbat Around KU
KU Hillel inspires students to convene their Jewish friends for Shabbat dinners in their dorms, homes, apartments and Greek houses. The purpose of the Shabbat Around KU program is to teach students how to host a Shabbat dinner for their friends so they will continue to do so in their adult lives post graduation.
- $100 funds 1 Shabbat dinner for 10 students
- $500 funds 5 Shabbat dinners
- $2,500 funds 1 MEGA Shabbat Around KU Event in which more than 20 students will host dinners on one night across KU’s campus
Support this program with your fund
Lawrence Jewish Community Congregation: Lawrence Children’s Jewish Educational Enhancement Program (CJEEP)
CJEEP aims to expose the children and teens of the Lawrence Jewish Community Congregation to the many Jewish cultural learning experiences and activities beyond religious school and family Shabbats in Lawrence, KS. Opportunities will be provided for youth to travel to Kansas City and Topeka to attend Jewish-themed events. There will also be new teen youth group activities coordinated with KU Hillel. Support this program with your fund
Midwest NSCY and JSU: Shabbat Shabang
Shabbat ShaBang provides Jewish teens the chance to participate in a traditional Shabbat experience. The group is marketed to students via the Jewish Student Union, an afterschool club for the community’s public high schools. Students from nine different high schools attend the programs, and there is even greater collaboration with BBYO as the program continues to attract both affiliated and unaffiliated teens. Support this program with your fund
National Council of Jewish Women: Back to School Store
The Back to School Store is a one-day event for kindergarten through fifth grade students. Each child is assigned an adult volunteer to help them "shop" for brand new clothing (jeans, shirt, tennis shoes, a package of socks, a package of underwear, winter coat, hat, and gloves), backpack and school supplies in popular colors and styles. Students are referred through collaborations with local social service agencies from all faiths, nationalities and racial backgrounds. In 2016, participating agencies included Big Brothers and Big Sisters, CASA of Jackson, Johnson/Wyandotte Counties, Kansas Children's Service League, Operation Breakthrough, Jewish Family Services, Jewish Vocational Service, and Gordon Parks Elementary. Support this program with your fund
National Council of Jewish Women: Suitcase to Start
Suitcase to Start is designed to help youth aging out of the foster care system in the Kansas City metropolitan area. Working with CASA of Jackson County and CASA of Johnson and Wyandotte Counties, NCJW provides new supplies including sheets, towels, pots, pans, dishes, silverware, and personal items to help teens set up their first homes. The furnishings alleviate some of the financial strain of the moving process, and provide teens with a sense that others care about them as they enter adulthood. The goal for the first year is to provide suitcases for 35 local youths aging out of foster care. Support this program with your fund
Orthodox Union: Jewish Student Union
Jewish Student Union runs Jewish culture clubs at 5 Kansas City public high schools to reach Jewish teens, including those who are unaffiliated and under engaged, and strengthen their Jewish identity and connection to Israel. Teens who grow up in unaffiliated families, or who have not been Jewishly engaged since their Bar or Bat Mitzvahs, participate in JSU because the clubs take place in their schools, removing barriers to entry. The JSU clubs provide informal Jewish education, positive Jewish experiences, a forum to ask questions about Judaism, a chance to meet other Jewish teens, and an opportunity to identify as Jewish. Support this program with your fund
University of Kansas: Jewish Studies Program
There is now a Jewish Studies major at the University of Kansas. Starting spring semester of 2016, KU students may apply for study-abroad programs at Tel Aviv University, Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and Haifa University. The Jewish Studies program asks for financial aid to provide scholarships to undergraduate students proposing to study in Israel. Support this program with your fund