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Bonim Kehilah

What is Bonim Kehilah? What does Bonim Kehilah mean?

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 will be individuals who want to help build meaningful Jewish community experiences for themselves and their peers.

What's included in the program?

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 opportunities in their communities.

Is there a fee to participate?

No, there is no fee to participate in Bonim Kehilah.

How often will we meet?

There is one gathering per month, either as a full Bonim Kehilah cohort or in smaller mentoring groups, with the occasional exception. We have two day-long intensive sessions (held on a weekend), one in the fall and one in the spring. The general time commitment for fellows is 2-4 hours per month. Fellows have subsidized (optional) opportunities to attend Jewish young adult events around New York City.

When are the applications due?

Applications must be submitted online by September 29, 2014.

Where will sessions be held?

Sessions will be hosted by participating synagogues or in alternate locations within Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens. All sessions will be MTA-accessible.

Is there an age limit?

Applicants must be between the ages of 24 and 35.

Can I choose my mentor and synagogue?

Absolutely! Please let us know your preference on the application. We will do our best to accommodate all requests.

Do I need references?

Yes! We ask that you provide contact information for two individuals: one who knows you on a personal level and one you've worked with in a professional or academic setting. Please do not use family members as references.

Who will be leading the sessions?

Training will be led by experts in their fields, speakers, clergy mentors and the fellows themselves, creating a true culture of learning and teaching.

Is there a stipend?

No, there is no stipend. However, fellows will be able to apply for micro-grant funding for future projects and will have subsidized opportunities to attend Jewish young adult events around New York City.

Who are the fellows?

Bonim Kehilah Fellows are young adults from across the New York area with a variety of personal and professional backgrounds.

Who are the mentors?

Our hand-picked mentors are dedicated clergy working with young adult communities in their synagogues. They are:

  • Rabbi Marc Katz (Congregation Beth Elohim, Brooklyn/Brooklyn Jews)
  • Rabbi Jim Stoloff (Temple Israel, Manhattan/NYConnect)
  • Rabbi Michael White (Temple Sinai, Roslyn/Sinai in the City)
  • Rabbi Elizabeth Wood (Reform Temple of Forest Hills, Queens)
  • Rabbi Ben Zeidman (Temple Emanu-El, Manhattan/Saviv)

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