Diller Teens Share Their Light
Posted on 12/15/2023 @ 05:00 AM
This past weekend, our CAJE Miami Diller Teen Fellows participated in their opening Jewish Identity Shabbaton where they engaged in activities designed to guide them in exploring the different aspects of their Judaism and bond as a group.
Diller Teen Fellows is Miami’s premier leadership development program for a select group of 20 Jewish teens entering grades 10 and 11.
The Diller program is designed to achieve three inter-related outcomes: building strong Jewish identities, making close relationships with Israel/ Israelis, and developing leadership skills to empower effective tikkun olam.
The program is pluralistic and encourages teens from different schools, synagogues, and backgrounds to come together and learn from each other.
Each Diller Cohort represents the diversity of the Miami Jewish community and brings together Fellows that identify as Orthodox, Conservative, Reform, or Just Jewish.
Diller is a unique program that fosters immense growth in teens, because of its commitment to using personal encounters as an educational tool.
One of those encounters was with Rabbi Efrat Zarren-Zohar, the Executive Director of CAJE Miami, and her husband, Avi Rosenberg, who stayed over Shabbat at the camp and engaged in programming with the Fellows. Both shared their knowledge of tefillah and their beliefs about G!D along with many other topics that came up naturally.
Throughout the Shabbaton weekend, Fellows participated in educational and social programming where they explored their identities and spirituality in a safe environment. Each Fellow was encouraged to embrace their individuality and share what makes them special in the group.
The safety and freedom of this environment allow the Fellows to explore topics from their relationship to G!d to the war in Israel.
“On this Shabbaton, I experienced discussions with other Jewish kids that I had never had before, earned more about myself and the Jewish community, and made new friends along the way.”
-Charlotte Mark, Current Diller Cohort 11
Our Jewish Identity Shabbaton fell on Hanukkah and focused on how young Jewish leaders can share their light with the world in times of darkness. The Fellows re-enforced their desire to show their Jewish pride after the weekend, when they returned to their individual schools.
Seeing the Fellows’ passion for knowledge, Judaism, and advocating for their community gives us all hope for a better future.
As our Fellows continue on their Diller journey, they will gain more skills and resources to help them share their light with the world.