Summer 2019 by the Numbers: Reform Youth Engagement is Strong!

Inside Leadership

Summer 2019 by the Numbers: Reform Youth Engagement is Strong!

Campers with their arms around one another and their backs to the camera during an outdoor Shabbat service

The days on the calendar are rushing by, and the countdown is on to summer 2019!

This summer, more than 600 congregational leaders will serve as faculty on a URJ youth program, including camps, Israel trips, and Mitzvah Corps programs. This is an exceptional network of clergy, educators, youth professionals, and lay leaders and it is unique among all the Jewish youth movements.

Without you, this work wouldn’t be possible. Your shared commitment to engaging the next generation is critical in helping each young person discover meaning, purpose, and joy in being Jewish. With congregations as sacred partners in this work, together our Movement is celebrating more than 20,000 Reform Jewish youth, teens, and young adults immersed in a Reform Jewish experience.

If you’re excited about that number, you’re not alone! Here are a few other numbers that have us excited and ready for summer:

  • Teens engaged in 200,000 hours of Israel education and 130,000 hours focused on mental health and wellness this year in NFTY and other Reform youth programs.
  • 5,000 college students engaged with the Reform Movement this year, mobilizing around issues, training their peers, and serving as staff for URJ camps and NFTY programs.
  • 2,000 teens had a leadership role in a congregation, camp, or NFTY region, shaping a generation of young leaders focused on increasing diversity, accessibility, and inclusiveness of our communities.

We know, too, that the numbers are only part of the story. Here’s a sneak peek at just a few of the highlights of the 2018-19 program year and what to expect in Summer 2019:


All of this, and so much more, is made possible by your shared commitment to engaging the next generation. Wherever you are this summer, we hope you’ll stay connected to your youth, teens, and graduates and follow along with us by subscribing to the Clipboard for the best stories from our programs.

On behalf of the URJ, we wish you and your youth and teens a summer full of meaning, purpose, and joy. Let the fun begin!

Have something to say about this post? Join the conversation in The Tent, the communications and collaboration platform for congregational leaders of the Reform Movement. You can also tweet us or tell us how you feel on Facebook.

Elena Paull is the assistant director of youth communications and engagement at the Union for Reform Judaism. She grew up at Temple Emanu-El in Dallas, TX, and is a proud alum of URJ Greene Family Camp and NFTY. Elena met her husband, Andrew, at NFTY Convention and currently lives in New York City.

Elena Paull
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