Dear Friend of NFTY-NAR,
Take a minute to reflect on your NFTY journey, no matter how you are affiliated. Whether it was called CRAFTY, LIFTY, WFTY, NFTY-NYC, NFTY-LI, NFTY-WF or NFTY-NAR, this region has played a major role in shaping lives, creating meaningful friendships, and teaching its teens about how to be their best selves and how to help others do the same.
The fact of the matter is that the vast majority of Jewish teens are unengaged in Jewish life. The 2013-2014 NFTY-NAR Regional Board has spent this year brainstorming ways to engage the unengaged, and I decided to create a Fundraising and Engagement Task Force composed of current members, regional board members, and alumni, to ask ourselves the tough questions in the hopes of finding meaningful answers.
What are our barriers of entry? How can we as a movement open our doors to more Reform Jewish teens? What if all teens wanting to participate in a NFTY-NAR program could attend their first event for free?
We came to the conclusion that a major barrier of entry for NFTY-NAR is cost. From our experience, we have found that many teens do not attend our events because of the money they would have to pay; for, even if the event is affordable to them, they are hesitant to join and don’t feel the cost is worth the risk and the expense.
We all know the great benefit this community offers in enhancing the lives of teens as they continue to grow and learn. As we aim to branch out and reach many more teens, we want to give any Reform Jewish teen the opportunity to come to his or her first event at no financial cost. It is our hope that, by doing so, every new member will find personal meaning in the NFTY-NAR community and continue to be a part of our community for years to come.
Ideas are only as great as their execution. We need your help in making this hope a reality. To start, we have set a goal of raising $10,000 to provide a free start for all potential NFTY-NARites. Our campaign will run until Saturday, May 10th, at our final event of the year, NFTY-NAR Gala, where we hope we will be able to say that NFTY-NAR members, alumni, parents, clergy, and staff came together to expand and enhance our holy community.
Jewish tradition teaches us that intention, kavanah, is an essential part of meaningful action. Please join with me in our campaign by donating and spreading the word so that we can offer NFTY-NAR to many more Reform Jewish teens and, together, act meaningfully with our strong intention. Whether it's $18 or $1800, your donation will make a huge difference, and words cannot describe our gratitude. Thank you!
2013-2014 NFTY-NAR Regional President
Temple Beth Abraham, Tarrytown, NY
If you'd prefer to mail a check instead of donating online you are absolutely welcome to do so. Please make the check out to "Union for Reform Judaism," with "NFTY-NAR Scholarship" in the memo line, and mail the check to:
Union for Reform Judaism
633 Third Avenue, 7 FL
New York, NY 10017