This week, East Midwood hosted 100 teens from two groups at Camp Tel Yehudah, Young Judaea’s national teen leadership camp. Tel Yehudah draws campers from across the United States, United Kingdom, Israel and increasingly, around the world.
The smaller group comprised mostly of rising 10th graders are participants in the Bonim program. Bonim helps teens become the next generation of Israel’s builders and advocates. Our Israeli and American counselors take them on a “deep dive” into the marvels and challenges that the State of Israel provides today.
The Bonim campers are participating in the Tzilum (Photography) Intensive Program Track. The teens will set out on a four day journey through New York with cameras in hand, using the city to explore how art and photography can tell a story, influence and educate others, and inspire action, all while learning the language of photography along the way. They will also learn about leading Israeli artists and photographers and how to tell Israel’s story through photographs and curate a meaningful final photo exhibit at the end of the session to be shared with the rest of camp.
The larger comprises of rising 11th graders in the Hamamah Experience. These teens are joining Jewish teen leaders through a mix of general and specialized leadership training, practical experiences, mentor opportunities and in-camp internships. There is a global community within Hamamah as they develop their own leadership skills. Campers include Young Judaea regional camp graduates, as well as teens from Havurah, FZY (UK) and Camp Kimama in Israel. After completing Hamamah, teens will be prepared to take on leadership positions in summer camps, youth groups and movements, schools and communities.
Teens on this unique Leadership Expedition came to New York City to explore different models of leadership and to gain practical experiences working with various populations around the city. They met with Jewish leaders in a wide variety of fields – most who are graduates themselves of Tel Yehudah. They developed and lead programs in day camps and other settings in New York City.
Since 1948, Tel Yehudah has been the summer home of tens of thousands of Jewish teens from across the United States and around the world. Their dynamic program builds leadership skills and motivation, social responsibility, critical thinking and life-long commitment to Israel and the Jewish People. At Tel Yehudah, Jewish teens take their first steps to becoming tomorrow’s leaders.
We are proud to have hosted these campers so that they could participate in service projects in our community. Our center is available for hosting other overnight groups. For more information please contact Randy@emjc.org