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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Judaism, Religion

Mission: At Moving Traditions, we believe that when Judaism promotes self-discovery, challenges traditional gender roles, and celebrates a diversity of voices, it has the power to move our teens, our communities, and Judaism forward. Through our field-tested programs Rosh Hodesh and Shevet Achim, Moving Traditions creates experiences that inspire Jewish teens to openly explore fundamental questions of identity and society. We help teens reach their full potential by connecting relevant content with enduring Jewish values, and by fostering positive peer-to-peer relationships through our trained mentors. Together, with the guidance of Moving Traditions, more Jewish teens are growing into adulthood with confidence, compassion and a lifelong commitment to Jewish community.

Results: Our professional development, program certification training, and curricular materials prepare Jewish educators – more than 1,000 to date – to effectively challenge and inspire this generation of teenage girls and boys to find meaning in Jewish life. Rosh Hodesh: It’s a Girl Thing! has already empowered 10,000 Jewish girls to navigate the challenges of becoming a woman in our society, while inspiring them to connect to Jewish community. Girls from 6th-12th grades meet monthly in intimate gatherings operated by over 200 Jewish organizations and led by Moving Traditions-trained facilitators. Shevet Achim: The Brotherhood seeks to stem the exodus of teen boys from Jewish life after bar mitzvah. The program empowers teen boys to navigate competition, aggression, social pressure, and other challenges in their lives – and to explore what it means to be a Jewish man and a mentsch. The growing program is now active in 28 Jewish institutions.

Programs: Rosh Hodesh: It's a Girl Thing! – building the self-esteem, leadership skills, and Jewish identity for thousands of teenage girls of all backgrounds across North America. Shevet Achim: The Brotherhood is a program for teen boys aimed at helping them to navigate the issues of masculinity in their lives and give them Jewish guidance, both spiritual and ethical, regarding what it means to be a mensch. Bat Mitzvah Comes of Age – a traveling exhibit from Moving Traditions and the National Museum of American Jewish History that tells the stories of the women who over the last ninety years turned a radical innovation into a nearly universal tradition.

Community Stories

41 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

helene Aylon

Advisor

Rating: 5

I was touched that a 13 year old Bar Mitzvah boy with an extensive Jewish background was inclined to reach out to his peers who may or may not have such a background and some may not even wish to set foot in a Synagogue after the apex of the Bar Mitzvah. There are so many ways for a young boy to be Jewish as he evolves into manhood combining a Jewish and a non-sexist approach. Moving Traditions was founded on these principles of a non-elitist, inclusive and profound sense of belonging. MT began the Rosh Chodesh services for girls; MT is now launching "The Brotherhood-Shevet Achim Gam Achim" for boys.

Previous Stories
7

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I met Sally Gottesman when she was first thinking of the name for her organization. Sally would never use her own namae. I was present when she thought of Movong Traditions as a name. Indeed not only does this organization move, but it is heartfelt, moving. It has touched girls across the country at a taime when they need to bond together. It has inspired older women to have a Bat Mitzva. It is now seeking to understand boys and find ways to bring them back into the fold after their Bar Mitzvas. I am volunteering my grandson who is in the University of Pa. to help in this regard.

6

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Rosh Hodesh has proved a great way to learn about my religion and connect with other girls of my faith. I really enjoyed doing activities. I've made new friends and new connections. Rosh Hodesh is a place where I can learn, speak my mind, connect with others, and have fun. Keep up the good work!

6

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I love Rosh Hodesh: It's a Girl Thing, but I think I like it mainly because I can interact and get to know my girl friends that i don't get to see most days. Also, we get to understand the world around us and our personal lives a little better. I do feel that the activities that we do are a little childish or not necessary or just uncomfortably awkward. This group is not supposed to be awkward, but to be fun and enjoyable.

6

Client Served

Rating: 5

I really love Rosh Hodesh: its a girl thing! I look forward to each meeting every month! I have become so close with my fellow members. we've built such a strong bond that allows us to speak freely and know that no one will judge. It is a fantastic program that has enabled me to look at issues in a jewish perspective as well as through other girls eyes. I truly cherish each and every meeting.

8

Client Served

Rating: 4

I really benefited from Rosh Chodesh at my synagogue. We had so much fun, and I got to see many of my friends that I do not get to see on a regular basis. It also really helped me connect with growing up to be the best Jewish woman I can be, since we learned about many Jewish female role models. Overall, it was truly an amazing experience.

7

Client Served

Rating: 5

I'm part of a Rosh Hodesh: It's a Girl Thing group in Denver, and mostly I am having a blast! Sometimes the activities are a little overrated, and I wish we could talk and express differently, without dancing around the 'issue' or topic of the month before we dive deep into it. But mostly I think it's great. Kudos to Rosh Hodesh: It's a Girl Thing!!!

10

Board Member

Rating: 5

After finding out about Rosh Hodesh:It's a Girl Thing! I just knew it was something I needed to be involved in by helping make connections in the SF Bay Area. The staff and board are deeply committed to Judaism and education, all through the lens of gender.

11

Former Volunteer

Rating: 5

I think that Rosh Hodesh, a program that's under the umbrella of Moving Traditions is one of the most effective and creative Jewish Education tools that I've seen in years. Especially in smaller communities it brings Jewish Teens together in a meaningful and supportive way (often Rosh Hodesh is the only Jewish Experience these teens have). I have seen groups of teen girls become so comfortable to share with one another, and all within a Jewish lens...I LOVE Rosh Hodesh and am so grateful for Moving Traditions for giving it a life!!!

10

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Our Rosh Hodesh: It's a Girl Thing group the past two years has brought girls together and enabled them to empower themselves to be individuals with strong Jewish values and identities. We have discussed the many different facets of their ages group in regards to social development, health and peer pressure. All of this we tie into their Judaism. Friendships have been made and nourished. This values based group is an activity that the girls will remember and learn from for many years.

9

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a group leader for Rosh Hodesh: it's a girl thing! at a Conservative synagogue in suburban Philadelphia. The program is incredibly well thought out, with creative and thought-provoking activities that engage and excite the 6th grade girls in my group. The training and support provided by Moving Traditions is top notch.