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Bonim Kehilah
About Bonim Kehilah

Bonim Kehilah is a 10-month leadership training fellowship for young adults in their 20s and 30s who want to further explore and take action in the Jewish community. Bonim Kehilah means "builders of community" in Hebrew; Bonim Kehilah fellows are individuals who want to help build meaningful Jewish community experiences for themselves and their peers.

The Hebrew bonim (builders) derives from the same root as banim (children), leading the rabbis of the Talmud to find dual meaning in Prophet Isaiah's words, "All your children shall be students of God and great shall be the peace of your children" (54:13). Banayich (your children) become bonayich (your builders) through study of Jewish tradition, building the future of Jewish life from a foundation of active learning.

Working together with New York-area synagogues, the Union for Reform Judaism's Bonim Kehilah Fellowship offers dedicated young adults an opportunity to shape vibrant peer communities, incorporating high-level personal development, significant mentorship and peer networking opportunities, and multiple avenues for Jewish identity exploration.

Over the course of the program Bonim Kehilah Fellows will:

  • Network and interact with young adult peers and lay and professional leadership from across New York's Jewish community
  • Meaningfully engage with Jewish tradition and practice
  • Explore innovative approaches to creating and sustaining Jewish community in the 21st century
  • Deepen personal connections to Judaism and the Jewish community as a whole

The 10-month fellowship consists of monthly evening or full-day leadership training sessions and regular meetings with clergy mentors and congregational communities. Fellows can apply for mini-grants of $1,000-$3,000 to support ongoing young adult engagement projects in their communities.

Bonim Kehilah is made possible through funding from UJA-Federation of New York 

Visit our FAQs to learn more.

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