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Young Judaea Youth Groups

Ohavi Zedek is proud to run youth groups for children from grades 2 to 12. Our youth program is affiliated with Young Judaea (aka YJ), a pluralistic non-denominational Jewish youth organization. All Jewish children from around northern Vermont are welcomed and encouraged to attend, synagogue affiliation is not required to join or participate in events. Participants in our youth groups develop leadership skills, a strong Jewish identity, a relationship with Israel, a commitment to making the world a better place, and cultivate friendships with other Jewish youth that last a lifetime.

Who We Are

Young Judaea is a pluralistic youth group. We welcome Jews of all backgrounds including Orthodox, Conservative, Reform, Reconstructionist and unaffiliated Jewish youth. Our Vermont groups involve kids from all of these communities, and geographically from the Burlington area, Middlebury to Montpelier to St. Albans and beyond. In order for all to be comfortable, our programs are planned in accordance with the laws of kashrut and Shabbat.

What We Do

We have three local YJ clubs here in Vermont, Ofarim (grades 2-4), Tsofim (grades 5 -7), and Bogrim (grades 8-12).  Our Bogrim club holds monthly activities and this year our Ofarim and Tsofim groups will be having 4 or 5 seasonal activities.  Click the links to the right for a schedule of upcoming events and to meet the advisors.

The five pillars of Young Judaea are social action, Jewish identity, Zionism, pluralism and peer leadership. YJ is peer-led, meaning that the high school group is led by a group of high school students. Our Bogrim (8th-12th grade) Mazkirut Board (or “The Maz” as they are known) are responsible for running the Bogrim group with adult supervision. They work hard to plan exciting, fun and educational activities for their group, and learn to be leaders. Our graduated members are leaders and activists in their college communities. Kids learn about and hopefully develop a connection to Israel. We try to incorporate some kind of community service and/or Jewish learning into our events.

At the regional level there are weekend long gatherings for Young Judaeans from all over the Northeast.

At the national level there are conventions, summer camps (Camp Young Judaea Sprout Lake for 2nd-8th graders and Camp Tel Yehudah for 9th-11th graders), and summer and gap year Israel programs.