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BBYO for Parents

What is BBYO?

Note: Below is an overview of BBYO written by Emily Reeves.  If you would like to see the official mission statement and objectives of BBYO, click here for the Official Definition.

B'nai B'rith Youth Organization is an international youth-led, non-profit, Jewish organization for high schoolers!  We plan the programs, fundraise, serve on the board, recruit members, manage the budget, organize community service activities, donate money, plan social action programs, plan conventions, and more!  Basically, the kids plan the programs that they want to see so they have fun but they also learn how to be a leader!
Here is what you need to know about BBYO!

  • BBYO is mostly teen-led!  Of course, we have 1 or 2 advisors per chapter plus Emily and Rachel in the Office! The Office approves all events and advisors are present at most events!
  • BBYO is split up into chapters of 30-40 kids (usually 10-25 come to each program). There are girls’ chapters and boys’ chapters.  Each chapter has a mascot, colors, a name, a number, and other things that make them unique.  Check out the chapter part of this website to see them all!  
  • Boys’ and girls’ chapters can do programs together or see each other at conventions or meetings!
  • We plan all sorts of programs: fun programs, sisterhood/brotherhood programs, community service/social action programs, sports programs, serious programs, movie nights, dinners, everything!
  • We do regional conventions where we all get together for a weekend and do programs and hang out at a hotel or in the mountains!  Of course, there are ample staff members watching out for us the whole weekend!



Here is a list of opportunities in BBYO for your munchkin:

  • Meet other Jewish teens!
  • Attend fun programs like murder mystery parties, dinners, sleepovers, and sports tournaments!
  • Attend serious programs like Holocaust programs, drug prevention programs, etc!
  • Attend Jewish programs like themed Shabbat dinners, Jewish Jeopardy, etc!
  • Volunteer!  We regularly plan community service and social action programs!
  • Attend self-esteem building programs like “Mind, Body, and Attitude” programs for the girls!
  • Run for board positions!  Since BBYO is entirely teen-led, your teen will have the unique opportunity to be a leader for his/her peers!  There is every type of leadership opportunity: president, programming head, Jewish chair, community service/social action chair, treasurer, secretary, newspaper-maker, membership chair, Israel chair, historian, and more!  Your child also has the opportunity to try being on board at a chapter, regional, or international level!
  • Become part of a sisterly or brotherly Jewish community!
  • Attend meaningful summer programs like Chapter Leadership Training Conference or Passport to Israel!
  • Befriend older brothers and sisters that will give advice, teach skills, and offer leadership to your young BBYOer!
  • Become a mentor for a new class of younger members!




Advisors are some of the most amazing people in BBYO!  They are volunteers but they commit so much time to their chapters!  They must approve all programs, outlines, newspapers, flyers, etc.  They are also present at most programs.  They offer advice to the board at board meetings and help train the new board members.  They are responsible and remind the kids about rules.  Some also chaperrone at conventions to make sure no one sneaks out!  Advisors are also loved members of the chapter and serve as mentors for many girls.  They are approachable and many girls find that they can go to their advisor for life advice, love advice, or recommendations. 

Please meet your child's advisors!  They are wonderful people!

BBYO Lingo

Is all this gibberish confusing you?  Then here's your basic dictionary!
BBYO: B'nai B'rith Youth Organization
AZA: Aleph Zadik Aleph- the boys' part of BBYO.
BBG: B'nai B'rith Girls- the girls' part of BBYO.
Office: refers to Emily Frank and Rachel Heilbronner, the two adult advisors that help the region and help you!
Prospect: your child!  A prospective member.  Many are in 8th grade, but many join later too!
AIT: Aleph-in-training.  For boys, this is what he will be from the time he signs up until he is inducted in the fall.
MIT: Member-in-training.  For girls, this is what she will be from the time she signs up until she is inducted in the fall. 
Chapter: group of 30-40 boys or girls.
Region: collection of chapters in a geographical region.  Rocky Mountain Region includes Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico, so our region includes all chapters in Denver, Boulder, Colorado Springs, and Albuquerque!
Regional Board: a girls' board and boys' board elected by the whole region.  They oversee all chapters and help their chapter counterparts on board as well as plan regional programs and conventions and maintain the regional website!

Denver: Meetings on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of every month at the JCC from 7:15 to 8:30 PM!

BBYO International Office
800 Eighth Street NW
Washington, DC 20001
P: 202.857.6633 / F: 202.857.6568

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