on december 8 - 9 and surrounding weekends, thousands of Jewish teens AROUND THE WORLD celebrateD Global Shabbat—BBYO’s biggest Shabbat experience yet

From Holocaust survivors to business professionals, faith leaders to cross-cultural activists, politicians to entrepreneurs, hundreds of Gamechangers shared their inspiring stories with teens from more than 500 local BBYO chapters in 20 countries as part of a diverse array of meaningful Shabbat programming built to bring the community together. 

Check out photo highlights below from global shabbat events around the world, including: London (United Kingdom), Buenos Aires (argentina), Izmir (Turkey), minsk (belarus), Rostov-on-Don (Russia), sofia (Bulgaria), Sumy (Ukraine), and communities Across the United States and Canada.

Global Shabbat 2017 reflected a wide range of enriching experiences of all sizes – including intimate chapter-led gatherings, community-wide events open to the public, and large-scale convention programs.

This year’s Global Shabbat program theme, “love your neighbor as yourself,” was embraced and elevated around the world, featuring:

  • Innovative, interfaith/cross-cultural Shabbat programming in:
    • Bay Area, CA: interactive programs, prayer, nosh, and discussion featuring a life-sized board game simulating a Syrian refugee's path to safety (facilitated by partners at Israeli humanitarian aid organization IsraAid)
    • Edmonton, Alberta: Kabbalat Shabbat dinner, discussion, and interfaith service featuring four religious leaders, including a community Rabbi, two reverends and a member of the Muslim community
    • Houston, TX: Interfaith Havdallah program in partnership with Houston-based Muslim youth group R.I.S.E., including a community art project, food, and cross-cultural discussion
    • Memphis, TN: Shabbat dinner and program with the local Muslim Student Association, featuring Rachel Shankman, Founding Director of the Memphis Chapter of Facing History and Ourselves
    • Montreal, Quebec: Community Shabbat dinner celebrated with Syrian refugee families from across Greater Montreal
    • Vienna, VA: Hanukkah-style dinner plus white elephant gift exchange/donation in partnership with Little River United Church of Christ
  • Welcoming of Holocaust Survivors with honorary inductions into AZA & BBG in:
    • Bethesda, MD
    • Freehold, NJ
    • Nashville, TN
    • Providence, RI
    • St. Louis, MO
  • Other notable Gamechanger Guests highlighted in:
    • Buenos Aires, Argentina: Diana Wang – Psychotherapist and President of Generaciones de la Shoa en Argentina
    • Cherry Hill, NJ: David Fleisher – President of the Cherry Hill Township Council
    • Chicagoland, IL: Ariel Halpern - Development Associate, Simon Wisenthal Center and Former Production Associate, The Ellen Degeneres Show; Reverend Brian Sauder - President & Executive Director of Faith in Place; and more!
    • Danbury, CT: Keith Davis – Former NFL player and motivational speaker
    • Denver, CO: Heather Lafferty – Executive Director and CEO of Habitat for Humanity Metro Denver
    • Kerhonksen, NY: Kane Smego – Spoken Word and Hip Hop Artist
    • Orlando, FL: Rep. Amy Mercado – Member of the Florida State House of Representatives
    • Richmond, VA: Dr. Timothy Snyder – Richard C. Levin Professor of History, Yale University
 

ABOUT GLOBAL SHABBAT 2017

ואהבת לרעך כמוך

V’AHAVTA L'REACHA KAMOCHA
LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF
LEVITICUS 19:18

This year, Global Shabbat focused on a core Jewish value that teaches to “love your neighbor as yourself.” Through strong, meaningful and exciting programming, BBYO elevated those in our world who best demonstrate this essential Jewish value. Now, more than ever, in a time filled with pervasive racial and ethnic injustice, rising antisemitism, and a growing refugee crisis around the world, it is critical that we embrace all our neighbors across our community, our people and our world. We are far more similar than we are different. Global Shabbat events around the world featured inclusive and inspiring gamechanger guests as a highlight of these meaningful Shabbat experiences.

 
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FEATURED GAMECHANGERS

Check out some of the amazing gamechangers participating in BBYO's Global Shabbat 2017:

Dr. Timothy Snyder Richard C. Levin Professor of History, Yale University Richmond, VA

Dr. Timothy Snyder
Richard C. Levin Professor of History, Yale University
Richmond, VA

Heather Lafferty Executive Director and CEO of Habitat for Humanity Metro Denver, CO

Heather Lafferty
Executive Director and CEO of Habitat for Humanity Metro
Denver, CO

Matt Rundquist Food Services Safety, Sanitation, and Sustainability Coordinator at the Museum of Science and Industry; Associate Board Member, Next Bites Food + Sustainability Nonprofit; Board Member, Helping Arms Transitional Housing Facility South Suburbs, IL

Matt Rundquist
Food Services Safety, Sanitation, and Sustainability Coordinator at the Museum of Science and Industry; Associate Board Member, Next Bites Food + Sustainability Nonprofit; Board Member, Helping Arms Transitional Housing Facility
South Suburbs, IL

Rev. Brian Sauder President & Executive Director, Faith in Place Buffalo Grove, IL

Rev. Brian Sauder
President & Executive Director, Faith in Place
Buffalo Grove, IL

David Fleisher President, Cherry Hill Township Council Cherry Hill, NJ

David Fleisher
President, Cherry Hill Township Council
Cherry Hill, NJ

Kane Smego Spoken Word and Hip Hop Artist Kerhonkson, NY

Kane Smego
Spoken Word and Hip Hop Artist
Kerhonkson, NY

Glory Gale Jeffries  Sr. Digital Development Producer, Facebook’s Life of Dad; 2017 Forbes Top 10 Influencers Online; Fmr. Producer for Carpool Karaoke: The Series and The Ellen Degeneres Show Glencoe, IL

Glory Gale Jeffries 
Sr. Digital Development Producer, Facebook’s Life of Dad; 2017 Forbes Top 10 Influencers Online; Fmr. Producer for Carpool Karaoke: The Series and The Ellen Degeneres Show
Glencoe, IL

Logan Booth Corporate Associate, DLA Piper Chicago, IL

Logan Booth
Corporate Associate, DLA Piper
Chicago, IL

Rabbi Josh Whinston Beth Emeth Synagogue Ann Arbor, MI

Rabbi Josh Whinston
Beth Emeth Synagogue
Ann Arbor, MI

Diana Wang Psychotherapist and President of Generaciones de la Shoa en Argentina Buenos Aires, Argentina

Diana Wang
Psychotherapist and President of Generaciones de la Shoa en Argentina
Buenos Aires, Argentina

Kate Applebaum Director of Partnership and Engagment, IsraAID Los Gatos, CA

Kate Applebaum
Director of Partnership and Engagment, IsraAID
Los Gatos, CA

Ariel Halpern Development Associate, Simon Wisenthal Center; Fmr. Production Associate, The Ellen Degeneres Show Glencoe, IL

Ariel Halpern
Development Associate, Simon Wisenthal Center; Fmr. Production Associate, The Ellen Degeneres Show
Glencoe, IL

Keith Davis Former NFL player and motivational speaker Danbury, CT

Keith Davis
Former NFL player and motivational speaker
Danbury, CT

Alex Goodfellow Program Director at The Little Bit Foundation Chicago, IL

Alex Goodfellow
Program Director at The Little Bit Foundation
Chicago, IL

Eric Hunker & Happie Hoffman  Singer-Songwriters Dallas, TX

Eric Hunker & Happie Hoffman 
Singer-Songwriters
Dallas, TX

Alina Spaulding Humanitarian and Educator Charlotte, NC

Alina Spaulding
Humanitarian and Educator
Charlotte, NC

Amy Mercado Member, Florida House of Representatives Orlando, FL

Amy Mercado
Member, Florida House of Representatives
Orlando, FL

Sarah Pressly Team Leader, Feed My Starving Children Vernon Hills, IL

Sarah Pressly
Team Leader, Feed My Starving Children
Vernon Hills, IL

Gabrielle Sauder Pediatric Nurse Practitioner and the Director of Mobile Services at Norwegian American Hospital Buffalo Grove, IL

Gabrielle Sauder
Pediatric Nurse Practitioner and the Director of Mobile Services at Norwegian American Hospital
Buffalo Grove, IL

Rachel Shankman Founding Director of the Memphis Chapter of Facing History and Ourselves Memphis, TN

Rachel Shankman
Founding Director of the Memphis Chapter of Facing History and Ourselves
Memphis, TN

GLOBAL SHABBAT EVENTS TOOK PLACE ALL OVER THE WORLD

embracing interfaith & cross-cultural neighbors

In addition to hosting Holocaust Survivors and other Gamechangers at Global Shabbat events this December, BBYO chapters were encouraged to embody this year's theme by enabling shared experiences with interfaith, cross-cultural and/or vulnerable populations in the community. Program ideas in this realm include: 

  • An interfaith Havdallah and song session with campfire, highlighting songs/stories of peace from multiple faiths
  • A shared service project bringing faith communities together to do good together ahead of the holidays
  • An interfaith potluck featuring traditional dishes, ceremonial breads, family stories and/or blessings over meals
  • A Shabbat meal with representatives from various local youth movements for discussion on faith, holidays, similarities across religions, etc.
  • New local refugees and Holocaust survivors to share the parallels of the refugee experience 70 years apart
  • A community leader from a local Latino rights, LGBTQ rights, African American association or other civil rights chapter (ACLU, ADL, etc.) as a Gamechanger at your Shabbat
  • A local elected official to speak about the issues important to diverse populations (Jewish, Muslim, Black, Latino, etc.) within the community and how working together can advance progress
  • A peer youth movement from another faith or culture, utilizing the Global Minds chapter initiative to build a meaningful interfaith Shabbat experience
  • A community oneg at a local homeless shelter
  • An interfaith group for a Shabbat program to co-create a community art installation depicting a shared value
  • A "Rainbow Shabbat" featuring multi-colored foods, an “express yourself” dress-up component, and an LGBTQ+ activist speaker
  • A journalist to speak about the implications of "fake news" on partisanship, community, etc., and the importance of civil dialogue
  • An "Unplugged Shabbat" featuring a speaker from the tech/social media industry to speak about developing/contributing to cyber-kindness
  • A Shabbat program with Best Buddies, Friendship Circle, or other organization helping kids with special needs
  • A multi-generational Shabbat service emphasizing the importance of tradition, acceptance, and tolerance 
  • A group of local student government leaders (high school or college) as featured Gamechangers to discuss the importance of Judaism/religion/faith/spirituality in the community and welcome them into our network

Did your community explore an awesome idea not included above? Let us know at azabbg@bbyo.org so we can share all the great things happening across the Movement!

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TOGETHER WE WILL INSPIRE THE JEWISH FUTURE