From the Regional Staff
Shalom and welcome to the January edition of our monthly eNews.
With winter came the highly-anticipated Beauheart Ball, BBYO's annual semi-formal affair. Teens from all local chapters filled the ballroom at the Sheraton Parkway Hotel on January 14th for a spectacular Hollywood-themed evening coordinated by Anastasia Shekhurdina of Chapter L'Chaim BBG #2444 and Ryan Buckspan of Chapter Exodus AZA #1111.
To view photos from Beauheart Ball and other regional events, please click here.
In just under three weeks, sixteen Toronto-area teens are headed to Atlanta to join more than 800 Jewish teens from a dozen countries for BBYO's largest International Convention in history! Stay tuned for the launch of the IC Blog where you can follow the action live!
Several more exciting regional events are also in the works:
- Laser Quest Lock-In (Sat. Mar. 24), a highly-anticipated annual tradition, will feature all-night laser tag, prizes, music and refreshments.
- J-Serve Toronto (Sun. Apr. 22), a project of the global day of Jewish youth service, will bring together 500 Toronto-area teens for an afternoon of community service.
For a full list of upcoming regional events for the 2011-2012 program year, click here.
And of course, local chapters continue to meet every Wednesday from 6pm to 8pm, in Toronto at the Prosserman JCC (Room 1-23) and in Vaughan at Dufferin Clark Community Centre (Room 5).
If you have any questions about anything in this eNews or would just like to chat, please be in touch! We can most easily be reached at 416.398.2004 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kevin Goodman, Executive Director
Jessie Greenspan, Program Associate
Regional Boards Launch Chapter Fundraise-Matching Initiative
The AZA & BBG Regional Boards have $1000 to distribute to local chapters. Watch the video below as Tatum Shiff, Regional Mazkirah (VP Communication & Fundraising) explains how your chapter can benefit:
BBYO Connect for Middle School Students
Next up for Grades 6-8, BBYO Connect presents Snow Tubing @ Chicopee Tube Park, Sunday February 5th. For details and registration, click here.
BBYO Connect is the BBYO experience made just for students in grades 6 to 8. At this crucial age, our programs bridge the gap between Bar/Bat Mitzvah and high school. We offer fun, meaningful and affordable experiences that will serve as a gateway to continued involvement in Jewish life.
With close to 50 kids at each event, BBYO Connect provides a positive experience where middle schoolers can get together with camp, school and synagogue friends as well as meet new friends from across the city.
If you know any students in grades 6-8 who may be interested in our programs, please send their contact information to Jessie Greenspan at email@example.com.
Click here to browse the full 2011-2012 program calendar for grades 6-8.
Plus... Eighth Graders are Now Eligible for AZA and BBG Membership!
Do you have an 8th grader in your life who wants to become involved with AZA and BBG? Beginning January 1st, all current 8th graders are eligible for full AZA or BBG membership, including opportunities to attend conventions and chapter meetings. Don’t miss out on the fun and meaningful opportunities that await, buy a membership today!
International Teen Presidents Return from BBYO's Canadian Regions and Global Affiliates
(BBYO's International Teen Presidents outside Buckingham Palace in London)
Grand Aleph Godol Oz Fishman and International N'siah Samantha Levinson just returned from visiting over 10 communities as BBYO’s International Teen Presidents! Starting with Canada, Sam and Oz spent the first half of December touring BBYO regions in Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal.
Then they crossed the Atlantic, visiting BBYO partner affiliates and BBYO/JDC service communities across the United Kingdom, Ireland, Bulgaria, and Israel. Their work as BBYO ambassadors helps unite Jewish teens across the world, building the BBYO movement and delivering on the teen-led agenda and priorities for 2011-2012. (You can watch a video detailing these priorities here.)
Learn more about Oz's discussion with Bulgarian teens on community service as a Jewish value, Samantha's excitement at Canada sending more than 40 teens to IC, and more reflections on their trip on Keeping PACE, the International Teen Presidents travel blog, chronicling their gap year with BBYO.
BBYO's 2012 Summer Experience Registration Is Breaking Records!
Do you want to spend your summer making a difference, traveling the world and building lifelong friendships? Registration for BBYO domestic Summer Experiences and BBYO Passport travel are up more than 400 percent over last year! Don't miss the opportunity to attend the program of your choice, as this unprecedented spike in early registration has left many experiences close to selling out.
The final early-bird discount of $75 ends Feb. 28th, so take advantage of the savings and make sure you are guaranteed a spot in what is sure to be a meaningful and memorable summer! Click above on the interactive brochure or visit BBYO.CA/SUMMER for more information and scholarship details on BBYO's broadest and most affordable menu of offerings ever.
Oratory Contest Winners to be Published in JTA - February 1 Deadline!
AZA and BBG is now accepting submissions for this year’s Oratory and Storytelling Contests! "Am I a Jewish American or American Jew? Jewish Canadian or Canadian Jew? Wherever you live, does your Judaism come before your nationality?" and “What makes Judaism unique and why is it important to me?” are the AZA and BBG themes for this year’s competition. If you’re creative, writing a fictional, funny story related to your BBYO experience and Jewish identity could win you the Storytelling Contest. More serious reflections on your personal experiences, the state of BBYO and the future of the Jewish people make up the Oratory Contest, with the JTA (the global news service of the Jewish People) providing special recognition to this winner by publishing their full submission to their audience of 200,000 monthly readers.
Visit the Storytelling and Oratory page on bbyo.org to watch videos and learn more about the details of this year's competitions. The deadline for entering is February 1, 2012! Winners will be announced at BBYO’s International Convention in Atlanta, Georgia from February 16 - 20.
BBYO Teens Discuss Weekly Torah Portions on Facebook
Join the more than 650 people on Facebook every week that receive video D'var Torah updates from BBYO teen leaders! Through this new Facebook group led by Benji Fages (Lake Ontario Region); Emily Nassir (Big Apple Region); Ben Nach (Mountain Region); and Amy Restan (United Kingdom), engage in conversations about the weekly Torah portion with fellow BBYO teens from around the world!
Click here to join the group.