THANK YOU FOR BUILDING THE REFORM YOUTH MOVEMENT WITH US!
NFTYx events are local events hosted by Reform congregations and supported by NFTY regional teen and adult leadership. Events are designed and led primarily by teens for teens and the host congregation encourages members and non-member teens alike to participate. Hosting NFTYx helps congregations engage teen members and foster a more expansive Reform teen community in their area.
The “x” signifies an unknown variable. NFTYx does not follow a set script or structure; each NFTYx reflects the unique ideas, goals, and collaboration of those curating the event. Wherever your creativity leads you, NFTY is here to help mobilize teens to attend and provide the structure and support to bring your vision to life.
To ensure that everyone is safe, comfortable and included, NFTYx event organizers agree to abide by our NFTY B’rit Kehilah (code of conduct), uphold NFTY’s 13 Principles, and follow our health and safety standards. NFTY and the URJ provide resources and publicity while acting as “Network Weavers” who connect the different opportunities together and convene and support program leaders.
“Hosting a NFTYx event has been a highlight of my synagogue youth career. I was blown away by how incredible these teens are, as well as how warm, welcoming, positive, vulnerable, and loving are the culture and community they have built. All of the teens who attended our NFTYx event had a great time — including/especially the NFTY first-timers! — and they all expressed that they planned on attending future NFTY events. Not only do NFTYx overnights like this provides a great foundation for boosting NFTY engagement, but being the host of a NFTYx event offers synagogue communities and youth professionals the chance to be leaders in this critical stage of rebuilding our new-normal NFTY community.”
-Jenna Friedman, Director of Youth Engagement at Temple Shir Tikva in Wayland, MA
Step 1: Connect with your Regional Mentor
Your NFTY Regional Mentor is your guide through the NFTYx experience.
- Connect with your NFTY Regional Mentor to discuss the calendar, what you are interested in doing, and how they and the Regional Board can you support you.
- Look through the NFTYx resources to help you plan.
Step 2: Identify your NFTYx Adult Lead
Every NFTYx event needs a minimum of one adult leader who will be physically present at the event and will be “in charge.” This can be a synagogue staff person, the NFTY regional mentor, or a trusted member of the community who is designated by the congregational leadership.
- Decide who your NFTYx Adult Event Lead will be
- Send them to the Adult Event Lead Training page to complete the forms and do the training (approx 1 ½ hours) This course must be completed by the Event Lead at least 7 work days prior the event. Keep an eye out for your official “NFTY Mentor” gift in the mail a week or two after you have completed the course!
- If you will have additional volunteers who will either be staying overnight in the same space as teens, will be hosting teens at their homes, or will be alone with teens for extended periods of time without another adult, please contact us at email@example.com to receive the form for these volunteers.
- For all overnight “shul-in” style events, you must (1) have a background check done on any adult spending the night, (2) maintain a 1:10 overnight adult//teen ration, and (3) have the adults sleeping in the same general space as the teens (if all teens are sleeping in the same room, the adults should sleep in that room as well). If you have questions or concerns about this policy, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Step 3: Complete Your Event Submission
In order for the URJ general insurance liability to cover your event, we need you to complete the synagogue host agreement form and share with us your COI or Proof Of Insurance. This form must be filled out by someone who can sign for the congregation.
- Sign the Synagogue Host Agreement at least three weeks before the event
- Email email@example.com with your physical mail address, the date of your event, and estimated attendance. We will be mailing you some NFTY giveaways for all of your participants!
- Apply for a NFTYx micro-grant! Each region has funds to support NFTYx events in their community. If you need some additional funds to make your event a success, please fill out this simple micro-grant application form. Your Regional Mentor and Teen Leaders will award the funds and reach out to you to help in your planning. Interested in helping to fundraise for these funds? Talk to your Regional Mentor!
Step 4: Create Your Registration and Publicize Your Event
We are excited to help you publicize your event to teens, parents, and synagogue leaders.
- Build your registration
- Get your event on the NFTY calendar – Submit an Event – NFTY
- Let our teen leaders share about your event by creating and sharing social media posts, and including your program in our emails
Step 5: Strengthen the Movement!
After the event, lets us help you celebrate and build our movement!
- After the event, upload the registration list so that the teens in attendance get invited to the next NFTY event in your community (and keep an eye in the mail in the weeks after you submit! We look forward to sending some NFTY swag to say “thank you” for being a partner in building a Reform Youth Movement we can all be proud of!)
- Share photos, stories, and testimonials about your program with your Regional Mentor so they an give you a shout-out our monthly newsletter and raise you up as a model for other congregations!
- Are you interested in helping other synagogue professionals learn to lead NFTYx events? Email Michelle Shapiro Abraham at firstname.lastname@example.org to join our leadership network.
NFTYx Resources for Certified Mentors and Teen Leaders
Registration, Budget and Event Set-Up
Inclusion, Community, and Safe Environment
- New NFTY Program Format – please copy and paste from this template
In the case of an incident including behavioral, medical, harassment, or abuse, please use this form to alert our full time staff team.
the nfty team
Michelle Shapiro Abraham, Executive Director of Strategic Innovation and Program
Rabbi Isaama Goldstein-Stoll, Director of Youth Organizing – Local Communities and Synagogues
Logan Zinman Gerber, Director of Youth Organizing – Leadership Development
Julie Marsh, Associate Director of Youth Organizing – NFTY
Emma Jaszczak Maszi, Strategic Innovation and Program Associate