Moving Traditions has selected more than 50 Jewish teen activists from across the US to create a feminist community for change
July 22, 2022 – Moving Traditions is proud to announce 52 newly selected 2022-2023 Kol Koleinu Teen Fellows from across the United States.
Moving Tradition’s Meyer-Gottesman Kol Koleinu Teen Feminist Fellowship, offered in collaboration with the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) and United Synagogue Youth (USY), is a distinctive opportunity for young Jewish feminists (10th through 12th grade) to learn how to effectively speak their minds and create the change they want to see in the world. Now in its fifth year, the Fellowship is welcoming the next class of competitively selected teen activists to participate in four regional cohorts.
The year-long fellowship invites teens of all genders to learn how to apply a Jewish feminist lens to the world, deepen their knowledge about social change, and amplify their voices to express a call to action.
The full list of 2022-23 Moving Traditions Kol Koleinu Fellows has been published on the Moving Traditions website.
The fellows will meet monthly online and at in person retreats to learn about Judaism, feminism, and social change. Paired with adult social activist mentors, they will use their expertise to create projects that teach their peers and advance positive change in their communities. Nine of our current fellows are returning for a second year.
The Meyer-Gottesman Kol Koleinu Fellowship is part of Moving Traditions’ suite of programs designed to embolden Jewish youth. This year, the fellowship was formally named for Moving Traditions’ founders, Deborah Meyer and Sally Gottesman, in a nod to acknowledge their collaborative effort. Since the program began in 2017, 140 fellows have participated.
“We are so excited by the passion and talent that this year’s fellows are bringing to Kol Koleinu,” said Shuli Karkowsky, CEO of Moving Traditions. “At Moving Traditions, we believe that in order to help teens thrive, we need to support their individual identities (shleimut), connect them to caring communities (hesed), and empower them to pursue justice (tzedek). In creating a community of Jewish feminists, this fellowship embodies all of those values. I can’t wait to see what they will accomplish together this year.”
Past participants in Kol Koleinu have created social change projects on a broad range of major issues, including body image, voting rights, the need for gender equality within their schools, menstrual justice, and inclusive sex education. A few highlights from the 2021-2022 cohort include:
- Gender Representation in the Classroom
Fellows: Gabriella Schwager, Jules Maylott, & Tal Pemstein; Mentor: Haley Schulman
Gabriella, Jules, and Tal created a website with a collection of digital resources for teachers to make their classrooms more representative of women and other gender minorities. The website includes a guide for teachers on creating more representative lesson plans and a guide for students on how to advocate for increased representation in the classroom.
- Jewish Queer Magazine
Fellows: Olivia Katz & Tamar Ladd; Mentor: Brooke Botwinick
Jewish Queer Magazine is a digital magazine that focuses on Jewish and queer identities. The magazine is a safe space for Jewish and Queer individuals to share their experiences, identities, and art.
- Her Brain Matters
Fellow: Samantha Renzulli; Mentor: Rachel Schein
Her Brain Matters is a podcast dedicated to demystifying the growing teenage female brain and what they don’t teach you in health class.
“We are proud to partner on the Kol Koleinu fellowship and to support these young adults in making our world more whole, just, and compassionate through their work,” shares Michelle Shapiro Abraham, Director of Learning and Innovation for the Union for Reform Judaism’s youth programs.
“During a global pandemic and its aftermath, community can be hard to come by. And for young people who are taking on big issues in the world, supportive relationships are essential,” says Jennifer Anolik, Fellowship Director for Kol Koleinu. “We cannot wait to meet this year’s exceptional fellows and for them to meet each other. Together with them, we look forward to creating a community of young Jewish feminist activists who, I have no doubt, will be an inspiration to us all.”
The Hadassah Foundation, Vector Group Consulting, Women of Reform Judaism, NFTY/URJ, and many generous individual donors have provided support to Moving Traditions to create and expand Kol Koleinu.