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CLTC Blog

CLTC 1, Day 7

Posted on 06/13/2016 @ 11:45 AM

Good morning from CLTC 1!

Today, teens can look forward to a full day of fun and learning. The day's programs include a Jewish Song session taught by our song leader, learning about Israel and Shavuot with our Shlicha from Israel, and an Ask for Help activity with the chapter advisors. Teens will learn about effective communication in the afternoon.

Last night's cookout dinner was a nice change of setting. The smell of the barbecue and the open, outdoor eating space created a very happy and enjoyable atmosphere. Take a look at what the teens had to say about it:

"CLTC for me has been a great experience so far. I've already made some great new friends who live all over the country. It is so much fun!" -Avery Klatsky, North Texas Oklahoma Region

"My CLTC experience has been amazing. I have made many new friends and new connections here". -Lucy Reish, Southern Region

"So far CLTC has been amazing! I have met so many friends and have already created so many memories that I will cherish forever. I have learned so many valuable leadership skills that I can use outside and inside of BBYO". -Andrea Hengber, Gold Coast Region.

"I have learned a ton about how to be an intelligent, strong, and capable leader. I have also enjoyed hanging out with new friends, growing as an Aleph and as a person". -Josh Feldman, North Texas Oklahoma Region.

We are looking forward to the exciting day to come!

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CLTC 1, Day 6

Posted on 06/12/2016 @ 08:30 PM

Over the course of the day, teens at CLTC 1 had the opportunity to participate in several new and exciting activities. They had the option to attend two programs that focused on the aspects of inclusion within their community, The chapters also competed in an exciting "Jello Jousting" tournament during their free time (Chofesh). In a series of rounds, two chapters faced off against one another at a time. One member was chosen to represent their chapter in every round. In order to play, each participant must balance Jello on the end of a long spoon, with their other hand held behind their back. Once the round begins, you must try to knock the Jello off of your opponent's spoon without dropping your own. It was very action-packed and entertaining activity for everyone! With half of CLTC already behind us, many of the teens feel as though they are beginning to understand why this experience is so special:

"I may not be related to my CLTC family by blood, but I can proudly say that the other participants of CLTC 1 is my second family! Even though only six days have passed, I know I have met my life-long best friends here. I can't wait for six more days with these amazing people!" -Lilly Sitver, Cotton States Region "It's been really cool learning how to plan successful programs, and very rewarding when you actually plan something that goes well. My chapter planned a Havdallah service for last night, and it was really cool to do that because others really enjoyed it. -Sophie Levy, Eastern Region. "It's only day six and I already feel like I've made great friends and have become a better leader!" -Roy Einhorn, North Texas Oklahoma Region. "CLTC has helped me learn to become a leader for my chapter. Only halfway through, I already feel prepared to lead my home chapter to success." -Brett Lewis, Cotton States Region.

After a successful first half of the session, we look forward to an even better six days to come!

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CLTC 1 Song Sessions

Posted on 06/09/2016 @ 09:00 PM

At CLTC, we are fortunate enough to have a very talented and enthusiastic song leader, Josh Cohen. He is a former BBYO member, and uses music to guide teens during services, programs and song sessions. During CLTC 1's first song session, all of the teens were able to come together and bond through Jewish music. The upbeat, positive experience was exhilarating for many participants:

"The best part of the song session was hanging out with all my new friends, and standing as a community while singing together." -Ashlee Kuper, Central Region West "The song session was meaningful to me because I got to be with my friends, doing something we all enjoy." -Lucy Reish, Southern Region "I loved spending time singing great songs with my brother Alephs and sister BBG's." -Avery Klatsky, North Texas Oklahoma Region "My favorite part of the song session was Josh's attitude, because his excitement really showed through, which pumped up the whole room. This is what makes us happy to be at CLTC." -Leeya Alperin, Cotton States Region.

The most meaningful part of the session for song leader Josh was "being able to bring my BBYO experience full circle. These are the same songs that I learned during my time in BBYO, and it's so special to see the teens bond over the same songs that I loved."

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Successful first day at CLTC 1!

Posted on 06/08/2016 @ 12:15 AM

Today, we had a very successful first day at CLTC 1! After a day of travel, teens arrived at Beber Camp with plenty of time to experience a tour of the camp, their first meal, a quick session in their chapters, as well as an icebreaker and friendship circle. Members were asked what they were most excited to learn over the next twelve days at CLTC. Here is what a few of them had to say:

"I want to be able to lead programs and hold a leadership position without questioning myself!" -Karli Silver, Eastern Region

"To become a better leader and make my chapter the best it could be." -Andrea Hengber, Gold Coast Region

"I want to make Jewish friends from across the USA. I hope I learn to be a better, more open leader." -Miriam Berkson, Great Midwest Region

"I'm excited to gain lifelong friends, learn leadership skills, and learn how to strengthen GMR" -Sammi Schnuer, Great Midwest Region

"To learn more to bring back to my chapter and region. To grow as a person and leader, and to make friends across the international order." -Jessica Cantor, Rocky Mountain Region

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CLTC 3 2016 Blog Updates Coming Soon!

Posted on 04/20/2016 @ 05:14 PM

We’re pumped for CLTC 3 2016, and hope you are, too! Check back here once the program starts for live updates all session long!

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CLTC 5 2016 Blog Updates Coming Soon!

Posted on 04/20/2016 @ 05:14 PM

We’re pumped for CLTC 5 2016, and hope you are, too! Check back here once the program starts for live updates all session long!

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CLTC 7 2016 Blog Updates Coming Soon!

Posted on 04/20/2016 @ 05:14 PM

We’re pumped for CLTC 7 2016, and hope you are, too! Check back here once the program starts for live updates all session long!

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CLTC 6 2016 Blog Updates Coming Soon!

Posted on 04/20/2016 @ 05:00 PM

We’re pumped for CLTC 6 2016, and hope you are, too! Check back here once the program starts for live updates all session long!

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CLTC 8 2016 Blog Updates Coming Soon!

Posted on 04/20/2016 @ 05:00 PM

We’re pumped for CLTC 8 2016, and hope you are, too! Check back here once the program starts for live updates all session long!

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CLTC 2 2016 Blog Updates Coming Soon!

Posted on 04/20/2016 @ 05:00 PM

We’re pumped for CLTC 2 2016, and hope you are, too! Check back here once the program starts for live updates all session long!

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Why CLTC?

Posted on 03/21/2016 @ 04:26 PM

I have been involved in BBYO for 40 years (I joined in 1976, and became an advisor in 1982) and, even during my early days as an Aleph, I heard about how great BBYO Summer Experiences were. I first learned about CLTC way back in 1980, and my then-Regional Godol told me whoever attended CLTC said it was an amazing, life-changing summer program. He urged me to attend CLTC that year, but I didn’t get around to it.

Throughout the next couple decades as I gained more and more experience as an advisor, my curiosity about CLTC never wavered. By the early 2000s, BBYO staff members Ellen Goldstein and Sherrie Stalarow (who are both still today’s CLTC Site Directors) urged me to staff a CLTC session. They said years of experience I had as a chapter advisor and the knowledge I had gained as a result made me the ideal CLTC Leadership Staff member. Finally, in July 2008, I made my way to my very first CLTC session. 

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Stuart Nulman, front row centre, with Alephs of Achdut AZA, the mock CLTC chapter he advised - CLTC 7 2013

By the time that session ended, all that was said about it was definitely true ... CLTC is indeed the best 12 days of your life. You didn't have to be a teen participant to absorb the positive impact CLTC has on an individual. I enjoyed working with a diverse group of teens from regions across the Order as we built a mock AZA chapter from the ground up and created not only a sense of unity, spirit and pride, but also inspired and motivated them to bring out their best talents and abilities to utilize not only for the good of their CLTC chapter, but for their chapters in their home regions and, afterwards, for themselves. And what makes it work so well? A well-run, organized program that combines the best of theoretical and practical learning, mixed with plenty of fun recreational programming that brings out the best in every one and encourages creating friends for life. It's all led by a group of hard-working, committed staff who share their love and dedication of BBYO with each and every teen part of the CLTC experience.

Since then, I have been a Leadership Staffer at five more CLTC sessions, and I always look forward to seeing what each new batch of teen participants have to bring to the table. They may be a group of strangers when they arrive on day one, but when they are ready to return home, they leave a much stronger, committed and dedicated person; in fact, the sense of unity and community bonds created within those short 12 days are so tight, they don't want to part and the emotions run quite high (understandably so).

But, what I like about staffing CLTC, and why it is such a fulfilling highlight for me every summer, is CLTC gives me the chance to apply the 40 years of BBYO knowledge and experience I’ve gained to future generations of BBYOers: to motivate and inspire them to become good leaders, effective leaders and empathetic leaders. Some of these teens come to CLTC as quiet, somewhat introverted people. But when they get the chance to show their talents or capabilities and are given an outlet to do so, the impact not only benefits their chapter as a whole, but also benefits the teen in question during their BBYO life and beyond. Thanks to the opportunities that are presented to them during their 12 days at a CLTC session, I have seen them rise within the executive ranks of BBYO, become effective community leaders and use the skills they learn at CLTC toward their respective careers. 

Basically, no matter what region you're from, or whether you're a freshman or junior BBYOer, or you have little or no chapter leadership experience, CLTC is not only the best 12 days of your life, but it brings out the best in every one who has the good fortune to attend a CLTC session, and I am very proud to help them do so year after year. 

Stuart Nulman
BBYO Advisor, Eastern Canada Region; Montreal, Canada
Proud CLTC Leadership Staff (CLTC 6 2008; CLTC 7 2011, 2013, 2015; CLTC 8 2014, 2016)

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Planning Shabbat Atmosphere

Posted on 07/24/2015 @ 07:00 PM

Hello readers, this is Henry Learner and Alex Kirshner from Mountain Region #47 writing to you about planning Shabbat atmosphere. Shabbat atmosphere is what leads up to the Shabbat service, including the dinner before it. We are also dorm of the day today, which means that we have all of the responsibilities that accompany that as well as planning for Shabbat. First, we had to choose a value of the day and we decided on individuality. Then, in the morning, we raised the American and Israeli flags. At lunch, we presented a slam poem about individuality and for dinner we are giving everyone a candle, which will spell out “Be Yourself.” It can be stressful planning many activities at one time, but we are confident that it will run smoothly tonight. This is out second and final time being dorm of the day and our first time planning Shabbat atmosphere, but we will exceed expectations for sure. Fraternally submitted with undying love for Aish Achdut AZA, we forever remain Alephs Henry Learner and Alex Kirshner.

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I Believe That We Will Win

Posted on 07/23/2015 @ 07:00 PM

Tuesday was a typical day at CLTC, until we were guided to the gazebo for a new activity. But sometimes things are not what they seem. The plot twist of the day was that all CLTC 6 campers would be competing in Maccabiah, or color war. Each person was assigned to a color: green, white, red, or blue. Each team included both Alephs and BBGs. Teams competed against each other in various events, including team building activities, a spirit/cheer contest, basketball, dodge ball, gaga, and family feud. Teams also participated in a photo scavenger hunt around the Bethany campus. Later that night we attended a party to promote the upcoming International Convention. There was music and dancing and we found out who won the color war. As team rankings were announced everyone cheered. The green team had won the Maccabiah Games! Overall, it was a day full of excitement, happiness, bonding, spirit, and recreation.

Wednesday was the beginning of chapter programs. All the chapters are getting to present the programs that they planned and it has been very interesting to see everyone’s ideas and hard work finally being put into action. This is crucial for our learning so we can see and experience more about programs to bring back to our chapters at home to strengthen them. Each mock chapter has based their program off of a programming fold to simulate an engaging and informative activity. This is all been a very proactive experience and we can’t wait to share our leadership skills with our chapters at home.

- Allana Beckman, South Jersey Region & Elena Rogers, Eastern Region

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Going Once, Going Twice, Sold!

Posted on 07/22/2015 @ 12:39 AM

Today was yet another exciting day at CLTC 6! Our mock chapter Chazak AZA successfully raised close to $600 today during lunch by hosting a fun and exhilarating live auction. The money raised will go towards helping children with disabilities through the non- profit organization called Bottles of Smiles, which was created by a member of the chapter itself last year. So far the auction is only half way over and we can’t wait to see the impact we make on children with disabilities as we continue fundraising tonight at dinner. To make us feel more connected to our stand- up cause, we plan to have the whole CLTC community work hands on with Bottles of Smiles later this week! This was a FUN(D) day! -David Stulberg, Rocky Mountain Region; Gavin Roth, Lonestar Region

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Fun With Fundraisers

Posted on 07/21/2015 @ 12:46 AM

Hi! This is Hope Crystal from Great Midwest Region, Danielle Haase from Rocky Mountain Region, and Elana Cohen from Northern Region East: DC Council. Today our mock chapter, Yalla Osher BBG, held a fundraiser for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. In it we sold raffle tickets to throw whipped cream pies at staff who volunteered to take part. Leukemia and lymphoma are types of cancer that affect many people’s lives and we feel strongly about the cause. Hope’s mother had leukemia and was cured, and every year they still do the walk for the cause. This is how we decided on our charity. Many people were eager to throw pies at certain counselors so our fundraiser was very successful. We raised over $200 for the cause. Today was as sweet as pie!

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CLTC 6 Goes To Israel

Posted on 07/20/2015 @ 12:54 AM

After a wonderful first Shabbat together, CLTC 6 “flew” to Israel and visited our Israeli counselor, Nofchi’s “house”. On the way there, everyone wrote letters to Israel as if Israel was a person. At Nofchi’s house, we heard a little about her life and “her Israel” and a few volunteers shared the letters that they wrote. These are two of those letters.

“Dear Israel, I recently visited you and had the best time of my life. Being there really changed my life. Going to places like Yad Vashem and Mount Hertzl really had a huge impact on my life. But the most memorable part was going to the Kotel on Shabbat. At that moment, with so many feelings going through my mind, then and there I knew what it was like to be Jewish. Love, Austin.” (Austin Winslow, Gold Coast Region)

“Dear Israel, You are the home, and you are the symbol, and you are the hope. Your history and beauty remind us Jews of the validity of our prayers. Israel, I see you for who/what you are and you have magic in you to heal and to help. Israel, you are appreciated. You teach us all around the world of the meaning of Judaism. Please continue to make everyone in awe of how beyond incredible you are. Keep flourishing, making your beauty even more prosperous, and please keep your character, which inevitably brings people together. I hope to see you soon. –Zoey.” (Zoey Goldberg, Northern Region East: DC Council)

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Looking Towards Shabbat

Posted on 07/17/2015 @ 07:00 PM

Hi! My name is Anna Fleisher from South Jersey Region #35. Today is only our first Shabbat at CLTC and I already feel so close with everyone. Working closely with my mock chapter has helped me with my leadership and teamwork skills. Having 67 teens travel from all different regions gives everyone an interesting perspective to the differences each region and chapter have. Each day, all of our leadership skills improve as we can bring what we learn back to our home chapters, and we can use them in the future for everyday purposes.

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Reflecting On Our Community

Posted on 07/16/2015 @ 11:00 PM

Hello everyone from Day 3 of CLTC, this is Spencer Fuhr from Evergreen Region, Cameron Diamond from Lonestar Region, and Tyler Dodd from Nassau Suffolk Region. At the beginning, everyone coming to CLTC does not know what to expect, though most people come to make friends. But we have found that people begin to establish who they are within the first few hours. The staff does a great job of preventing people from feeling isolated, by interacting with them and others at the baggage claim and throughout the program. We also noticed that our fellow participants started to come together and form friendships as early as the first hours together at the airport and during icebreakers. We thought a lot about why/how this happens, and the conclusion we came to is that we, as Jewish teens all relate with one another through the common interest of two things, BBYO and Judaism. Throughout our BBYO careers, we have learned how to branch out, meet new people, and be outgoing people. We think this is exceptionally rare for teens of this generation to branch out and meet new people with such ease. But the thing about BBYO is that we all share a common goal, and that goal is to reach self-realization. Fraternally submitted with undying love for Chazak AZA #115, CLTC 6 2015, and the Global Jewish community.

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Building Connections at CLTC 6

Posted on 07/16/2015 @ 12:31 AM

Hey y’all, it is day 2 of CLTC 6 and we are already having a blast. This is Nikki Goldin from Lonestar Region, Julia Keizler from New England Region, and Hannah Haine from Eastern Region, Virginia Council. Today our dorm is the “dorm of the day.” This means our mock chapter of 11 girls, which is also known as Yalla Osher BBG (“let’s go happiness”!) gets to choose a Jewish value theme for the day. Yalla Osher BBG chose the value of “Ahavat Ger.” This value addresses loving and talking to people all around you, including strangers. We enforced this today by encouraging others to find and talk to new people based off of similar characteristics. This proved to be incredibly beneficial to our fellow Alephs and BBGs. It feels great to know we might be the reason people have life long friends. We are already having a fantastic time here at CLTC, and we are anxiously awaiting these following days.

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Welcome to CLTC 6!

Posted on 07/15/2015 @ 12:00 AM

Welcome to CLTC 6 2015! We are your coordinators, Rebecca Lewis from Eastern Region and Colin Silverman from Great Midwest Region. We're so glad to say that everyone has arrived safely and we are all very excited for the upcoming 12 days. We spent the day getting to know each other and beginning to build our community.

The theme for CLTC this summer is "find yourself a teacher" whether that be staff, each other, or the two of us. For many participants, this is their first Summer Experience and we are eager to be a part of it and welcome them to BBYO on the International level. As everyone goes to bed tonight, we reflect on our first day together and prepare for the next 11 days of fun and learning.

Remember to continue to check the blog throughout the session for more posts from the participants!

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